Things are starting to move fast on the Trump/Russia front. First, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer is out.
Sean Spicer, the embattled and increasingly invisible White House press secretary, resigned on Friday morning shortly after the president offered Wall Street financier Anthony Scaramucci the job of White House communications director. The New York Times, which first reported Spicer’s resignation, writes that Spicer “vehemently disagreed” with Scaramucci’s appointment as his new boss, and that he quit in protest.
These developments appear to be the first steps in a long-promised communications shakeup at the White House, which has struggled to stay focused amid the unfolding Russia collusion story.
Scaramucci is a polarizing figure among the warring factions in Trump’s administration. According to Axios, White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus and chief strategist Steve Bannon opposed the appointment, while Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner supported it. As communications director, Scaramucci would be stepping into a position that has been vacant for several weeks since the resignation of Mike Dubke, a Spicer ally, in May.
Scaramucci is a fast-talking businessman, exactly the type Trump respects. He's names Sarah Huckabee Sanders as the new press secretary, and Spicer gets to train his replacement through August.
But the White House wouldn't be getting rid of Spicer at this juncture if damage control wasn't the top priority, and they know they're going to have a hurricane or two worth of spin to put out. Spicer wasn't up to the job, frankly. Something big is coming on the horizon, and that something may have been this major leak on Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
Russia’s ambassador to Washington told his superiors in Moscow that he discussed campaign-related matters, including policy issues important to Moscow, with Jeff Sessions during the 2016 presidential race, contrary to public assertions by the embattled attorney general, according to current and former U.S. officials.
Ambassador Sergey Kislyak’s accounts of two conversations with Sessions — then a top foreign policy adviser to Republican candidate Donald Trump — were intercepted by U.S. spy agencies, which monitor the communications of senior Russian officials both in the United States and in Russia. Sessions initially failed to disclose his contacts with Kislyak and then said that the meetings were not about the Trump campaign.
One U.S. official said that Sessions — who testified that he has no recollection of an April encounter — has provided “misleading” statements that are “contradicted by other evidence.” A former official said that the intelligence indicates that Sessions and Kislyak had “substantive” discussions on matters including Trump’s positions on Russia-related issues and prospects for U.S.-Russia relations in a Trump administration.
Sessions has said repeatedly that he never discussed campaign-related issues with Russian officials and that it was only in his capacity as a U.S. senator that he met with Kislyak.
“I never had meetings with Russian operatives or Russian intermediaries about the Trump campaign,” Sessions said in March when he announced that he would recuse himself from matters relating to the FBI probe of Russian interference in the election and any connections to the Trump campaign.
Jeff Sessions's perjury before Congress at his confirmation hearing involving the extent of his association with Trump's Russian buddies is basically the worst-kept secret in Washington, but this has now become the 90-ton giant robot in the room.
It's almost like the White House wants Sessions gone. Oh wait, Trump does want Sessions gone, but the White House would rather not fire him outright. They gave Sessions the chance to resign earlier this week after Trump's interview with the NY Times where he flat out said that he wouldn't have appointed Sessions if Trump had known Sessions would recuse himself on Russia. Remember, this was basically the reason he fired Comey: perceived lack of personal loyalty to Trump despite his obvious misdeeds.
Suddenly there's a new WH Communications Director and this massively damaging leak on Sessions hits the Washington Post, along with calls from conservatives for Sessions to resign.
Don't need a PhD to put this one together, guys. Trump wants somebody at the DoJ who will kill the Mueller investigation. The Saturday Night Massacre 2: Orange Boogaloo is coming.
I mean hell, Trump himself is giving up the game.
While all agree the U. S. President has the complete power to pardon, why think of that when only crime so far is LEAKS against us.FAKE NEWS— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 22, 2017
Of course, he'll need to get Mueller canned before the idnictments come. I know I've said multiple times in the past that only the House can bring charges against a sitting president, and that it's up in the air as to if a federal grand jury can indict one, but hey, that depends on who you ask, and it's not the first time this question has been asked, either.
A newfound memo from Kenneth W. Starr’s independent counsel investigation into President Bill Clinton sheds fresh light on a constitutional puzzle that is taking on mounting significance amid the Trump-Russia inquiry: Can a sitting president be indicted?
“The 56-page memo, locked in the National Archives for nearly two decades… amounts to the most thorough government-commissioned analysis rejecting a generally held view that presidents are immune from prosecution while in office.
Just putting something out there. Trump's damn well thinking about it, I guarantee you.