If you are going to ‘drain the swamp’ you have to do it right…
But those same Trump team members who believed Comey should go also believed there should be a process involved in doing it. Truth be told, not all of them — some wanted to see Trump fire everybody on Jan. 21: U.S. attorneys, ambassadors, Obama holdovers, everybody. But the more institutionally-minded members of the Trump team wanted to see a process observed. In the case of removing Comey, that involved going through the chain of command.
The structure was this: The FBI director reported to the deputy attorney general, who reported to the attorney general, who reported to the president. When Trump fired Comey Tuesday afternoon, that chain of command had been in place for all of 14 days.
First, it took a long time to get an attorney general in office. Facing Democratic opposition, Jeff Sessions, one of the president’s first nominees, was not confirmed by the Senate until Feb. 8. Then, it took a long time to get a deputy attorney general in place. Rod Rosenstein, the deputy — and the man who wrote the rationale for axing Comey — faced similar Democratic delays and was not sworn in until April 26.
Only after Rosenstein was in place did the Trump team move ahead. That was true not only for chain-of-command reasons but also — probably more importantly — because Rosenstein had the bipartisan street cred to be able to be the point man in firing Comey. Even though his confirmation was delayed, Rosenstein was eventually confirmed by the Senate by a 94 to 6 vote, meaning that the vast majority of Democratic senators voted for him along with all of the Republicans.
How important was the arrival of Rosenstein to the bid to fire Comey? This, from a source in a Senate office Wednesday morning: “Many who are suggesting that there’s something nefarious about the timing of the Comey firing are likely missing the fact that DAG Rosenstein was sworn in two weeks ago (April 26), and that the FBI Director reports to the DAG on the DOJ org chart. It seems completely normal that the DAG would review their top reports within the first couple weeks of starting.”
Discount the part about “completely normal” — firing the FBI director, who has a ten-year term and was conducting a high-profile investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election that touches on the president, was not a routine act. The point is, it took the arrival of Rosenstein to do it.
Read the whole thing.
PDJT followed proper procedure. Imagine that.
Comey’s ‘chain of command’ during his Obama administration investigations…
Andrew C. McCarthy (whom I and others wouldn’t mind seeing in the FBI director’s chair): In Clinton Caper, Comey Was the Most Visible Player, Not the Most Consequential
Yep, it is all a tangled web spun by the Obama administration on many levels, and they all believed it would work and convince the American people that Hillary was clean as the driven snow on everything.
DOJ categorically denied on the record that this happened. NYT's anonymous sources don't even work at DOJ or FBI. https://t.co/vuNT1i2xZV
— Sean Davis (@seanmdav) May 10, 2017