President Donald Trump continued his ill-advised tweeting about the Special Counsel investigation, calling on Attorney General Jeff Sessions to stop Robert Mueller “right now.” Putting aside that Sessions correctly recused himself from such matters over a year ago, the demand for terminate the investigation undermines Trump’s legal team and, for those other than his core base, it comes across as defensive and increasingly alarmed about the investigation. I have never understood these tweets because I have yet to see compelling evidence of a crime by Trump linked to obstruction or collusion.
Trump tweeted this morning that
“Attorney General Jeff Sessions should stop this Rigged Witch Hunt right now. Bob Mueller is totally conflicted, and his 17 Angry Democrats that are doing his dirty work are a disgrace to USA!”
It is a familiar refrain, if not a mantra, from the President. Sessions would have to violate his recusal decision (made at the recommendation of career Justice officials and ethicists) in terminating the investigation. I was one of the early voices calling for the recusal of Sessions (and later Rod Rosenstein). I also have written that I agree with the criticism of Mueller’s appointment. Mueller’s conflict in his interviewing for Comey’s job as well as his past association with Comey should made him ineligible.
On the heels of the Helsinki trip and the controversy over the President’s approach to Putin, it could not be a worst time for such an action. He is pushing for a decision that would not be supported by many members of the GOP in Congress. It would also lay the foundation for an impeachment demand if the Democrats retake the house.
In other words, the marginal value of these tweets for the base is heavily outweighed by the benefits. Indeed, the worst thing that could happen for Trump would be for Sessions to take such an action. I have previously said that this investigation could clear Trump of these allegations but these attacks undermine any such advantage, even if Mueller finds no crimes by Trump.