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Donald Trump's public shaming of Jeff Sessions is shameful

President Donald Trump continu...

Posted: Mar 1, 2018 8:26 AM
Updated: Mar 1, 2018 8:26 AM

President Donald Trump continued his long-running public shaming campaign of Jeff Sessions Wednesday, with a tweet bashing his attorney general's behavior as "disgraceful."

Tweeted Trump: "Why is A.G. Jeff Sessions asking the Inspector General to investigate potentially massive FISA abuse. Will take forever, has no prosecutorial power and already late with reports on Comey etc. Isn't the I.G. an Obama guy? Why not use Justice Department lawyers? DISGRACEFUL!"

Here's what is actually disgraceful: The president of the United States is engaged in a one-sided smear effort against the man who, less than 18 months ago, he nominated to be the top law enforcement official in the country.

Consider:

There's more.

But let's take it out of the context of a president talking about his attorney general. If a boss treated an employee this way -- denigrating him publicly, saying he would never have hired him if he knew then what he now knows -- we would say that boss was acting deeply inappropriately. Heck, the person being berated might even file a complaint with the human resources department because of the boss's behavior.

Go back even further in your life. If a kid at school called your kid "beleaguered" or "very weak" or "disgraceful," you would call that kid a bully and maybe even ask the school to do something about it.

And yet we seem to tolerate this sort of behavior from the President of the United States -- a man who holds a position of massive authority and import, someone who influences the behavior of people whether or not he intends to.

This is not to say "woe to poor Jeff Sessions." The former Alabama senator was a prominent Trump surrogate during the course of the 2016 campaign and spent enough time around Trump to know what he was getting into when he accepted the attorney general job. He wanted the job more than he worried about working for Trump.

Plus: Sessions could always quit. He could have quit after all of the past Trump slights. He could quit today.

He didn't. Instead, Sessions said this: "As long as I am the attorney general, I will continue to discharge my duties with integrity and honor, and this department will continue to do its work in a fair and impartial manner according to the law and Constitution."

This isn't about Sessions, though. Not really. This is about Trump redefining -- downward -- the sort of behavior we are willing to accept (or ignore) from our leaders.

The President touts himself as the biggest, baddest boss in town. If that's true, and if he really believes Sessions is doing as poor a job as he seems to believe, via his tweets, then Trump should fire the attorney general. If not, he should let Sessions do his job without undermining him at every turn.

That is what an adult does. What Trump is doing is the opposite.

And yet, with the exception of a handful of Republicans who have come to Sessions' defense, there has been little hue and cry over this latest attack from Trump.

Maybe that's because there's an ongoing feud between his chief of staff and his son-in-law. Or maybe it's because his communications director had admitted to telling white lies in support of him. Or maybe it's because the special counsel Robert Mueller is looking into Trump's financial status -- and maneuvers -- prior to his decision to run for president.

I get it. Trump has a remarkable knack for making news. But when his attacks on Sessions aren't big news anymore, it amounts to a tacit acceptance that that sort of behavior is normal now. It isn't. Or it shouldn't be.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 726600

Reported Deaths: 13379
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion992781737
Lake53359964
Allen40387675
St. Joseph35449550
Hamilton35440408
Elkhart28376439
Tippecanoe22336217
Vanderburgh22271396
Porter18637306
Johnson17876377
Hendricks17154314
Clark12919191
Madison12574339
Vigo12426245
Monroe11845169
LaPorte11773210
Delaware10615185
Howard9859215
Kosciusko9366117
Hancock8239140
Bartholomew8042155
Warrick7766155
Floyd7645177
Grant7019174
Wayne7018199
Boone6669101
Morgan6547139
Dubois6148117
Marshall6000111
Dearborn578577
Cass5780105
Henry5681102
Noble558283
Jackson500472
Shelby489496
Lawrence4492120
Gibson434391
Harrison434271
Clinton426853
DeKalb425284
Montgomery423388
Whitley394439
Huntington387480
Steuben382957
Miami380266
Knox371890
Jasper362747
Putnam358560
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Jefferson328881
White312854
Daviess295899
Wells290481
Decatur283592
Fayette278662
Greene276685
Posey270933
LaGrange264770
Scott264753
Clay259245
Randolph239781
Washington239532
Spencer231331
Jennings229248
Starke214452
Fountain211946
Sullivan211042
Owen197056
Fulton194640
Jay191830
Carroll188120
Perry182637
Orange182454
Rush172925
Vermillion168343
Franklin167735
Tipton162345
Parke145916
Blackford134532
Pike133034
Pulaski116045
Newton107034
Brown101541
Crawford99114
Benton98414
Martin87815
Warren81415
Switzerland7848
Union70710
Ohio56211
Unassigned0413

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1080121

Reported Deaths: 19344
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1254981392
Cuyahoga1115202107
Hamilton798171200
Montgomery512711012
Summit46997933
Lucas41982782
Butler38273580
Stark32190907
Lorain24910480
Warren24249297
Mahoning21474586
Lake20586368
Clermont19727238
Delaware18496131
Licking16396210
Fairfield16144199
Trumbull15996466
Medina15233262
Greene15027244
Clark13960297
Wood13056188
Portage12806201
Allen11609231
Richland11308198
Miami10659215
Muskingum8795132
Wayne8777210
Columbiana8756229
Pickaway8547121
Marion8511135
Tuscarawas8467243
Erie7859154
Hancock6900126
Ross6835152
Ashtabula6777169
Geauga6665148
Scioto6398101
Belmont5856167
Union570047
Lawrence5542102
Jefferson5511151
Huron5422119
Darke5344122
Sandusky5330120
Seneca5268121
Athens518258
Washington5148109
Auglaize488484
Mercer480185
Shelby468593
Knox4479110
Madison435461
Putnam4268100
Ashland421289
Fulton420969
Defiance418997
Crawford3965106
Brown392957
Logan381176
Preble379098
Clinton370561
Ottawa366279
Highland353861
Williams338075
Champaign330458
Guernsey315453
Jackson312051
Perry294550
Morrow283839
Fayette281449
Hardin270364
Henry268166
Coshocton264258
Holmes2590101
Van Wert242863
Pike237433
Adams237052
Gallia235048
Wyandot230654
Hocking215162
Carroll191247
Paulding172440
Meigs144639
Noble133337
Monroe131942
Morgan108323
Harrison107537
Vinton82415
Unassigned02
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