It’s no secret that Donald Trump wants to fire Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, and has wanted to for some time. And it’s no secret that this desire has erupted into flaming hatred in the past week, after it came out that Rosenstein approved the FBI raid of Michael Cohen’s office (Cohen is Trump’s attorney, and the FBI was looking for evidence of payouts to Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal). But in a pretty remarkable new turn, Trump and his White House allies are trying to lay the groundwork for canning Rosenstein by undermining him publicly—to drum up popular outrage, they’re asking their allies to use every possible chance to attack his credibility on TV.
That comes from the Wall Street Journal, who took advantage of the fact that there is literally nothing that won’t leak from the White House. Details from The Hill:
The idea is to launch attacks on Rosenstein, the Justice Department official overseeing special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian election meddling, in a way that avoids making it appear that Trump is meddling in the probe.
One person who spoke to the president this week told The Wall Street Journal that Rosenstein’s ouster is “a matter of when, not if.”
Needless to say, Trump is being advised not to do this, in no uncertain terms, by top members of his staff (including Sarah Huckabee Sanders), along with Republican members of Congress—just as he was advised not to fire Comey when he did so last May. After making that move, the focus on the Russia investigation intensified like never before, and Trump’s people are trying to warn him that the same thing will happen—except worse—if he shows Rosenstein the door. It will also spell disaster for congressional Republicans seeking re-election in 2018, and facing the possibility of losing both chambers of Congress. National outrage against the sitting president never bodes well for his party in the midterms.
So far, there’s been the stirrings of action on the TV front—tea party lunatic and Freedom Caucus leader Mark Meadows (R-NC) alluded to the desirability of firing Rosenstein on Tuesday, and Trump himself even told his followers to watch Sean Hannity’s show on Wednesday, in which Hannity called for Rosenstein’s dismissal. As usual, Trump shows absolutely no skill at hiding obvious collusion.