As Vox is reporting, Trump is growing nervous about special counsel Robert Mueller’s broadening investigation into the Russian collusion scandal. Especially if Mueller delves into Trump’s family financial records, including the $100 million sale of a Florida mansion to a Russian oligarch in 2008 and the decision to have the 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Moscow.
In response, President Trump is contending that there is a “conflict of interest” that would prevent Mueller from continuing his investigation, however, that conflict has not been disclosed. As Vox also reported, the White House is indicating that one conflict of interest is the fact that some of Mueller’s staff donated money to Hillary Clinton’s campaign. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has stated that donations to political candidates are not a fireable offense. As the White House continues to dig desperately for another alleged “conflict” to fling at Mueller, Attorney General Jeff Sessions sits on the sidelines.
As reported by CNN, Jeff Sessions may soon be on the chopping block. Ironically, Trump seems to prefer his employees quit (Michael Flynn, Sean Spicer) rather than be axed. He’s probably hoping that a barrage of insulting tweets and bad-mouthing in The New York Times aimed at Sessions will get the desired letter of resignation. The White House is already looking at Rudy Giuliani, as a possible replacement for Sessions. During his extended, ongoing campaign against the Attorney General, Trump angrily tweeted his dismay that the “beleaguered” Session wasn’t investigating Hillary Clinton.
All these attacks on Sessions are appearing to have an effect on Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who according to Newsweek is debating quitting after “unprofessional” Trump continues publicly bashing the Attorney General. Tillerson’s resolve to stay on the job appears to be waning and he could resign before the year is through, especially as the “frustrating tug-of-war” between the Secretary of State and the White House persists, including a heated tiff with son-in-law Jared Kushner, who has taken over various foreign-policy duties.
Kushner himself was in the hot seat today, being interviewed by the Senate, specifically a meeting he attended with Donald Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer to get “dirt on Hillary Clinton.” The Washington Post stated that Kushner told the Senate he had a “long back and forth” email conversation with Trump Jr. about the meeting and that he didn’t have time to, “read it all.” According to Kushner, the only thing he knew about the meeting was that it was listed as a “meeting: Don Jr. | Jared Kushner” and that, “no one else was mentioned.” Kushner went on to note that he arrived too late and missed the incriminating part of the meeting. It is important to note that Kushner did not contest the meeting or the ‘incriminating’ evidence against Trump Jr. and the president. Kushner, was evidently intent on only defending himself and separating himself from Trump Jr. as he told the senators, “I did not collude with Russia.”
Jared Kushner’s potentially damning interview wasn’t the only thing on Trump’s mind today. The New York Times is detailing Trump’s onslaught of tweets regarding tomorrow’s scheduled Senate vote to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. The vote would be on a motion to begin debating the repeal and replacement of the ACA, however, Senate Majority leader, Mitch McConnell has not indicated which plan will be up for the vote. At least three Republican senators, Susan Collins (Maine), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) and Shelley Moore Capito (West Virginia), have stated that they will not vote on any motion to only repeal the ACA without a replacement offered. Trump is blasting senators, even threatening “electoral retribution” against senators who do not vote in favor of tomorrow’s motion. The New York Times is indicating that these threats may land on deaf ears as rank and file Republicans begin to lose confidence in the White House.