Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

The Problem Is Not Only That Trump Fired Comey, But How He Did It

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Bob Bauer has a Lawfare post worth reading. From the post:

What was missing as a matter of process from the dismissal yesterday?

  • A full explanation of why the decision was reached now, with this apparent urgency, when there is a pending IG investigation into Mr. Comey’s handling of the email investigation.
  • The reasons for the decision not to provide Mr. Comey with advance notice of the dismissal, leaving him to learn about it from cable news—a decision made without regard for the effects on the Bureau’s morale or for the questions that would be raised about the continuity of operations (including the Russia-Trump campaign investigation).
  • A full explanation of why Attorney General Sessions, who had recused himself from the Russia investigation, was involved in the decision to fire the Director in charge of it.
  • A full explanation of the basis for the recommendation from Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein, who had been on the job for 14 days and who produced a short, seemingly informal memorandum in support of the dismissal.
  • Any steps to assure the Congress and the public that steps have been taken to protect the integrity of a Russia investigation committed to a corps of career professional investigators and prosecutors.
  • The nomination of a qualified nonpartisan, professional replacement for Mr. Comey, or the announcement of an expedited timetable for such a nomination.

The Administration, in short, has shown little regard for thoughtful process in law enforcement that is key to the maintenance of the integrity of the legal system, and of public confidence. Mr. Trump and his DOJ leadership have jumped ahead of the Inspector General’s inquiry, moving suddenly to put their views on record on the same issues the IG is addressing. They have failed to explain why they did so, when the alleged misconduct to which they appeal is no different from that which generated the IG inquiry and was widely known when the President took office. The AG was involved in this decision when recused from any matter involving the Russia investigation—again with no explanation. The Deputy AG could not have weighed the matter carefully in 14 days, some part of which he spent writing the short memorandum: which means he reached his conclusion in less than those two weeks. So with whom did he consult—and on what factual record, developed in what way and by whom, did he depend?

Again: no explanation.

Moreover, the Administration took no pains to say

Written by LeisureGuy

11 May 2017 at 1:47 pm

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