The very day after Americans sent the crystal-clear message that they want Democratic oversight of his presidency, Donald Trump decided the smart move was to take aggressive action that will in fact require House Democrats to use those oversight powers. For that reason and others, Trump made both a political and a tactical mistake Wednesday in firing Attorney General Jeff Sessions and installing Robert Mueller’s arch-nemesis to oversee the Russia probe.
First of all, nothing holds more peril than making the move everyone expected when you have pretty close to no idea what cards are being held by your adversary, special counsel Robert Mueller in this case. As a former federal prosecutor and colleague of Mueller told MSNBC Wednesday, contingency planning runs in Mueller’s veins.
“He has contingency plans for everything,” Glenn Kirschner said of Mueller. “I can assure you Mueller and his team have been preparing for a moment like this,” he added, saying that Trump’s move would only accelerate their timeline.
And from a purely political standpoint, Trump just made his own corruption impossible for Democrats to ignore as they prepare to assume their oversight role in January. Right on cue, the incoming chair of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform issued a statement about Sessions’ firing.