The Oust of Jeff Sessions

Elena Naze, Chief Editor

 At President Trump’s request, Attorney General Jeff Sessions resigned on Wednesday, November 7th.

In his letter to White House Chief of Staff, John Kelly, Sessions wrote, “At your request, I am submitting my resignation.”

Sessions was instrumental in enacting many of Trump’s visions for America, such as rolling back on many Obama-era policies on police reform, civil rights, and immigration. While a permanent replacement has not been named, it was announced by Trump that Matthew Whitaker, the Chief of Staff to Sessions will take over as the acting Attorney General. Whitaker has been critical of the Muller investigation, which he will now take over. However, because of Whitaker’s opinions on the investigations many people are concerned that President Trump may be using this as a way to take control of the Russia investigation. Whitaker previously said that if Sessions was replaced the budget for the Muller investigation might become “so low that his investigation grinds to almost a halt.”

Because of the firing of Sessions, many are now worried about the job security of Muller. Democrats even released a statement on Wednesday urging that Muller be left alone to do his job.

Some have even gone as far as to say that Trump’s appointment of Whitaker is illegal. The state of Maryland is expected to contact a Federal judge for an injunction stating that Mr. Whitaker is not legally the acting attorney general and instead the job should legally go to the deputy attorney general, Rob J. Rosenstein. If Trump followed the Justice Department’s line of succession, Rosenstein would be the acting attorney general. However, Trump chose an unconfirmed appointee, who has made his opinions on the Muller investigation known in the past.

The Trump administration has defended Whitaker’s appointment by pointing to the Federal Vacancies Act that says a president can temporarily fill a vacant position that would normally require senate confirmation with a senior official that has been in the department for at least 90 days.

The attorney general is the most powerful law enforcement official in the United States, overseeing criminal and national-security investigations and dealing with civil rights laws. In addition, the position also oversees the Muller investigation.

Whitaker released a statement saying, “It is a true honor that the President has confidence in my ability to lead the Department of Justice as Acting Attorney General. I am committed to leading a fair Department with the highest ethical standards, that upholds the rule of law, and seeks justice for all Americans.” 

The outing of Jeff Sessions has created much debate and worry over the fate of the Muller investigation, which still remains unknown.