Normally it wouldn’t make news when a president touts the work of a cabinet member. As the old song goes, that’s the way I always heard it should be.
But in the Trump administration, “dog bites man” can easily become “man bites dog.” Thus, it’s news that President Trump is praising Attorney General Sessions for cracking down on illegal leaks of classified information.
Writing on (where else) Twitter, Trump declared: “After many years of LEAKS going on in Washington, it is great to see the A.G. taking action! For National Security, the tougher the better!”
There were rumblings that Sessions expected crack down on leaks was just a means of getting back into Trump’s good graces. I’m hearing less of that now that transcripts of the president’s conferences with the leader of Mexico and the leader of Australia have been leaked. This was too much even for many Trump-hating Democrats. Indeed, Virginia Senator Mark Warner, a Democrat, has called for a congressional investigation.
Does this mean that Sessions is out of the dog house? As a practical matter, he probably was released even before he announced the crack down on leaking. Reportedly, John Kelly, the new White House chief of staff, had already assured Sessions that his job is safe.
Even Trump could see that removing Trump would place the Justice Department in the hands of Rod Rosenstein for the foreseeable future. Unlike Sessions, Rosenstein is not a Trump ally. And it was Rosenstein, not Sessions, who appointed James Comey’s pal Robert Mueller as special counsel.
Jeff Sessions is working tirelessly to implement the policy agenda Donald Trump campaigned on. The same cannot be said for some members of Trump’s team. Dismissing Sessions would have been a colossal mistake.
Trump may yet make that mistake, but not, it appears, for a good while.