Jeff Ses­sions forced out

The Recorder & Times (Brockville) - - WORLD NEWS - ERIC TUCKER

WASH­ING­TON — At­tor­ney Gen­eral Jeff Ses­sions was pushed out Wed­nes­day as the coun­try’s chief law en­force­ment of­fi­cer af­ter en­dur­ing more than a year of blis­ter­ing and per­sonal at­tacks from U.S. Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump over his re­cusal from the Rus­sia in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

Ses­sions told the pres­i­dent in a one-page let­ter that he was sub­mit­ting his res­ig­na­tion “at your re­quest.”

Trump an­nounced in a tweet that he was nam­ing Ses­sions’ chief of staff Matthew Whi­taker, a for­mer United States at­tor­ney from Iowa, as act­ing at­tor­ney gen­eral.

The res­ig­na­tion was the cul­mi­na­tion of a toxic re­la­tion­ship that frayed just weeks into the at­tor­ney gen­eral’s tu­mul­tuous ten­ure, when he stepped aside from the in­ves­ti­ga­tion into po­ten­tial co-or­di­na­tion be­tween the pres­i­dent’s Repub­li­can cam­paign and Rus­sia.

Trump blamed the de­ci­sion for open­ing the door to the ap­point­ment of spe­cial coun­sel Robert Mueller, who took over the Rus­sia in­ves­ti­ga­tion and be­gan ex­am­in­ing whether Trump’s hec­tor­ing of Ses­sions was part of a broader ef­fort to ob­struct jus­tice and stymie the probe.

The im­pli­ca­tions for Mueller’s in­ves­ti­ga­tion were not im­me­di­ately clear. The Jus­tice De­part­ment did not an­nounce a de­par­ture for Deputy At­tor­ney Gen­eral Rod Rosen­stein, who ap­pointed Mueller more than a year and a half ago and has closely over­seen his work since then.

The re­lent­less at­tacks on Ses­sions came even though the Alabama Repub­li­can was the first U.S. sen­a­tor to en­dorse Trump and de­spite the fact that his crime-fight­ing agenda and pri­or­i­ties — par­tic­u­larly his hawk­ish im­mi­gra­tion en­force­ment poli­cies — largely mir­rored the pres­i­dent’s.

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