Sessions’ Session Ends in the White House
By: George Burkert
The day after the United States 2018 Midterms was expected to be a day all about what the Democrats are likely to do now that they possess a house majority.
People also anticipated what might occur now that the Republicans gained Senate majority.
Instead, the latter part of the day was dedicated to a new headline, which was Attorney General Jeff Sessions was forced to resign.
Ever since Sessions recused himself from the Russian investigation, the relationship between President Trump and Jeff Sessions was strained.
Trump continuously called on Sessions to not recuse himself, using Twitter to take swipes at him, even referring to Sessions as Mr. Magoo the cartoon character.
Trump said if had he known Sessions would recuse himself, he would have never selected him as Attorney General.
Trump pushed Sessions to end the Robert Mueller investigation and instead investigate former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and former President Barack Obama.
Despite Sessions recusal, he still followed the Trump agenda. Sessions enforced the travel ban President Trump implemented back in 2017 and was tough on illegal immigration.
What’s really surprising in all of this is how ugly the relationship between both men had become.
Sessions was one of President Trump’s earliest supporters in 2016 from the Senate, campaigning for him and even defending him after the Access Hollywood tape where Trump said inappropriate things was leaked out in October 2016.
This was not a peaceful or friendly exit like UN ambassador Nikki Haley’s exit where Trump praised Haley and Haley in return praised Trump.
While Trump may seem glad to get rid of Sessions, in his resignation letter, Sessions said he was grateful to take on issues like the opioid crisis and be tough on illegal immigration.
There was no date on the resignation letter so it is unknown when the official resignation took place.
The resignation could have happened back in the summer, where hints were dropped that Trump could fire Sessions right after the midterms especially if Democrats won back the House.
The current acting Attorney General is Matt Whitaker, who has defended the Trump Tower meeting where Donald Trump Jr met with Russians to get information on Clinton that could hurt her campaign and believes the Mueller investigation should end.
While Trump has to pick a new attorney general, Whitaker could be acting attorney general for as long as 7 months.
The firing of Sessions has angered Democrats, who are pushing for legislation to protect Mueller. Democrats are pushing Whitaker to recuse himself from the Mueller investigation.
Retiring Republican Senator Jeff Flake has pushed for legislation to protect Mueller as well, threatening to block judicial nominees. Whitaker has said he would allow the Mueller to continue according to Senator Lindsey Graham, who also supports Flake’s bill to protect Mueller.
Candidates for Attorney General include former New Jersey governor Chris Christie and former New York City mayor and current lawyer to President Trump, Rudy Giuliani.
If Christie is chosen it’s unknown if he would recuse himself, but if Giuliani is chosen it is very likely he would not recuse himself, defending Trump more often.
Sessions leaving does make it easier to pass a criminal justice reform bill, as Sessions was very tough on crime.
Republican Senator Chuck Grassley and Democratic Senator Dick Durbin have worked together on a criminal justice reform bill which has gotten support from President Trump, but would have caused issues with Sessions.
As for what Sessions will do next, it’s currently unknown. There is a rumor, however, that Sessions is currently thinking of re-running for Senate in 2020 against current Democratic Senator Doug Jones, who won Sessions’ former Senate seat against controversial Judge Roy Moore at the end of 2017.
If this move proved anything it’s that President Trump, whether people love him or hate him, knows how to manipulate and play the media by making this the biggest story the day after the 2018 Midterms.
Though with a House majority of Democrats now, it will only increase talks of impeachment and make people wonder if Trump is guilty or hiding something.