Wednesday, July 26, 2017
Forget loyalty to Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
The Alabama Republican is a deeply good man of impeccable decency. Donald Trump — the man — certainly owes Mr. Sessions respect, gratitude and loyalty.
But when a man becomes president, he forfeits so many of the conventions that govern normal relationships between people in ordinary life.
A president should remain fiercely loyal to no one but the American people and do his utmost to protect the high office to which he was elected.
If loyalty to Jeff Sessions undermines a president’s loyalty to the voters or to his office, then by all means the president should throw Mr. Sessions under the bus. For the good of the people. For the good of the presidency.
Placing the duty of office over personal loyalty is a sign of presidential leadership. Tawdry personal alliances and shady back-scratching among grifters is how you get an ungovernable leviathan federal government that stinks worse than a swamp at low tide in August.
The problem right now is that in no way does Mr. Sessions represent even the slightest disloyalty to the American voter or the presidency. In fact, a good case could be made that the best way Mr. Trump can remain loyal to voters and the presidency would be to stick with Mr. Sessions.
Instead, Mr. Trump has chosen to publicly savage Mr. Sessions over and over again for recusing himself from the farcical “Russia” investigation being run out of Mr. Session’s Justice Department.
I, too, wish Mr. Sessions had not recused himself, but I understand why he did. Special Counsel Robert Mueller should be fired and the whole investigation scuttled.
But dumping all over Mr. Sessions does absolutely nothing to help Mr. Trump achieve the goal of killing this investigation.
What happens if Mr. Sessions gets tired of all the insults and quits? Then he will be replaced by the very same career bureaucrats and swamp denizens who began the whole stupid investigation in the first place.
How, Mr. Trump, does that help you?
Do you actually think the Senate will ever confirm you a new attorney general who will kill this stupid zombie investigation into anything and everything until they pin some tail on some donkey?
Of course not.
Today we stand at a precipice. Either we are a country that is governed by the people, or we are not.
It is why, Mr. Trump, you got elected. People were so fed up with career politicians and endless political squabbling that they chose a reality-TV star over all the professional pols.
The politicos fought you tooth and nail through the Republican primary and then the general election. The day you got elected, they started plotting a coup.
Which is what this whole “Russia” probe is about. It is about using the federal bureaucracy to undo a popular election.
Your job, Mr. Trump, is to protect the presidency from this villainy.
Publicly berating and humiliating your attorney general does absolutely nothing to serve that purpose.
• Charles Hurt can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter by @charleshurt.
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