Trump’s Latest Shot at Jeff Sessions Might Be a Fake-Out
President Donald Trump has publicly criticized Attorney General Jeff Sessions more frequently and more viciously than any other member of his administration, but there’s reason to believe that his latest shot across the bow may be a head-fake for the benefit of the liberal media.
On Wednesday, Trump bashed Sessions for not taking the FISA abuse scandal at the Justice Department seriously enough in the wake of the Nunes memo revelations.
“Why is A.G. Jeff Sessions asking the Inspector General to investigate potentially massive FISA abuse? Will take forever, has no prosecutorial power and already late with reports on Comey, etc. Isn’t the I.G. an Obama guy? Why not use Justice Department lawyers? DISGRACEFUL!”
Trump was responding to an interview Sessions gave to Fox News on Tuesday, where the attorney general confirmed that allegations of FISA court abuse would be handled by Inspector General Michael Horowitz.
In previous instances where the president has publicly blasted Sessions, the attorney general has remained quiet and measured in his responses. Not so this time. In this instance, unusually, the AG issued a press release of his own, standing behind his decision.
“We have initiated the appropriate process that will ensure complaints against this Department will be fully and fairly acted upon if necessary,” he said. “As long as I am the Attorney General, I will continue to discharge my duties with integrity and honor, and this Department will continue to do its work in a fair and impartial manner according to the law and Constitution.”
Sessions’ “at the ready” response is one reason we think this latest spat may be little more than a charade for the press. Another reason is Trump’s suggestion that Justice Department lawyers should be the ones to investigate the scandal. That simply doesn’t make any sense, given how many of THEM are “Obama guys” as well and, indeed, the fact that it is the Justice Department that they would be investigating. If ever there was a need for an outside, independent party to look into these matters, this would be it. You don’t ask the arsonist to investigate the arson, and Trump obviously knows that.
Now the question, of course, becomes: Why Trump would do such a thing? The answer could lie in a report soon to be issued by the Inspector General himself. Horowitz is nearly done with his months-long investigation into the Clinton email matter, and his report could throw a lot of people under the bus. A lot of Democrats, to put it another way. What better way for Trump to distance himself from this report and give it added credibility than to bash the IG as an “Obama guy” before it lands? What better way to bait the media into defending Horowitz for a week just before their guy comes out and says Hillary Clinton got away with murder?
Sometimes Trump just vents about whatever happens to float across his mind, of course, and this may be just more of that. But there’s something about the odd timing and subject of this tweet that makes us think the master is playing his fiddle. All we can do is listen and wait.
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