OPINION: POTUS vs. U.S. Attorney General
By Stephanie Sawaked
President Trump wastes no time to let the world know, in true Trump fashion via Twitter, just how he really feels about the man he hired to uphold the law.
Let us rewind to a time before Trump was in position – his main campaign promise was to drain the swamp that filled Congress and to investigate Hillary Clinton’s email scandal and lock her up in prison. Surprisingly, the promise became a campaign staple and many Americans trusted Trump would do just that and gained votes. When Trump was elected to office and began his “swamp-draining”, then Senator Sessions was a controversial pick as Attorney General.
Trump has been no stranger to the FBI lately, starting with the firing of former FBI Director, James Comey for his handling of the Russia investigation which has spiraled into what Trump refers to as a witch hunt and a hoax. However, Sessions, maybe reluctantly, agreed to testify in public about his role in the administration and the amount of times he was in contact with Russia’s ambassador to the U.S. when the Russia probe began and possibly his role in the firing of Comey.
Tensions quickly began boiling over about Sessions recusing himself from the investigation, to which Trump responded to the New York Times report saying, “If he was going to recuse himself he should have told me before he took the job and I would have picked somebody else.” And to further explain Trump’s disappointment, he went on a 10-part tirade, expressing the “VERY weak position on Hillary Clinton crimes” Sessions took, according to one of the 10 tweets.
In light of the Trump’s comments blasting Sessions’, colleagues have come to Sessions’ defense. Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa said, “no one was more qualified to carry out all the president’s goals of law enforcement” than Sessions.
Senator Lindsey Graham from South Carolina also took to Twitter to express his concern with Trump’s latest statements calling them “highly inappropriate” and stating that “Prosecutorial decisions should be based on applying facts to the law without hint of political motivation” and finally, claiming “Jeff Sessions is one of the most decent people I’ve ever met in my political life.”
So, where does this leave Sessions? When reporters asked Trump on whether Sessions plans to resign, he responded with the ever-classic eye roll. In an interview with NBC News, newly hired White House Communications Director, Anthony Scaramucci told Hugh Hewitt, “If there’s this level of tension in the relationship that, that’s public, you’re probably right,” when asked if it was “clear that the president wants Sessions gone.”
White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway’s only comment was that it was up to the President to decide the future of Sessions’ career as Attorney General.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The Carolinian, the University of South Carolina Upstate, or any affiliated institutions.
Stephanie Sawaked is a writer for The Carolinian. Email Stephanie with questions and comments.