How much more evidence do you need before you wake up to the fact that the country is being run by a would-be autocrat.
On Wednesday, The New York Times is out reporting that Jeff Sessions is expected to fire Andrew McCabe just days before his scheduled retirement.
In case you need a refresher here, the Times reminds you that McCabe “is ensnared in an internal review that includes an examination of his decision in 2016 to allow F.B.I. officials to speak with reporters about an investigation into the Clinton Foundation.”
The DoJ’s inspector general determined that McCabe was in fact not forthcoming during that review and that, in turn, set in motion the disciplinary process that recommended his termination.
That means his fate is ultimately in Sessions’ hands – those hands have been prone to trembling when their owner is “beleaguered” thanks to a President who has commandeered the nation’s law enforcement apparatus.
As the Times goes on to note, “lack of candor is a fireable offense,” but there’s an orange elephant in the room. To wit:
Of course you already know the history here and if you don’t, you can check out the archive. Suffice to say Trump is going to compel Sessions to fire McCabe before he retires in order to strip him of his pension. Here’s the Times again:
Now, Mr. Sessions is the final arbiter of Mr. McCabe’s dismissal, shortly before his retirement takes effect Sunday. Though no decision has been made, people inside the Justice Department expect him to be fired before Friday, a decision that would jeopardize his pension as a 21-year F.B.I. veteran.
Although the administration will ultimately claim Trump had nothing to do with this decision, no one will believe it. The tweets speak for themselves as does the backstory which, you’re encouraged to remember, includes this:
In meetings with Mr. McCabe, the president questioned how he had voted and needled him about his wife, calling her a “loser,” according to people familiar with the conversations.
So yeah. This is coming from Trump and it will be seen as such by lawmakers and the public alike – or at least lawmakers and voters who have managed to retain some semblance of sanity over the past 14 months.
This will also be seen as a test for Sessions, who has recently suggested that he may be close to his breaking point with a President who reportedly calls him “Mr. Magoo” behind his back.
Just another day in paradise.