- In private conversations with other White House officials, President Donald Trump reportedly calls Attorney General Jeff Sessions “Mr. Magoo,” a cartoon character known for being comically clumsy.
- Trump has repeatedly criticised Sessions for recusing himself from the Russia investigation and not doing focusing more to investigate former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.
- On Wednesday, Trump took to Twitter to call Sessions’ conduct at the Justice Department “disgraceful.”
President Donald Trump reportedly has an unflattering nickname that he uses in private to refer to Attorney General Jeff Sessions: Mr. Magoo.
The detail was revealed Tuesday in a Washington Post report, which highlighted Trump’s long-held frustration with Sessions since the attorney general recused himself from the Justice Department’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 US election.
Sessions’ decision to stand down brought Trump to the brink of firing him last July, which special counsel Robert Mueller is now investigating as part of a potential obstruction of justice case against the president, The Post said.
Mr. Magoo, a cartoon character first popularised in 1949, is bald, short, and hysterically clumsy. While the comparison to Sessions may be in poor taste, it is arguably more favourable than other nicknames Trump has trotted out for some of his other political targets.
During the 2016 campaign, for example, Trump coined a slew of belittling nicknames for his opponents, including Crooked Hillary Clinton, Lyin’ Ted Cruz, Low Energy Jeb Bush, and Little Marco Rubio.
For months, Trump has laid into Sessions for not investigating the “crimes” of Clinton, the former Democratic presidential nominee.
“So why aren’t the Committees and investigators, and of course our beleaguered A.G., looking into Crooked Hillarys crimes & Russia relations?” Trump said in a tweet last year.
On Wednesday, he took to Twitter to attack Sessions again.
“Why is A.G. Jeff Sessions asking the Inspector General to investigate potentially massive FISA abuse,” Trump said. “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!”
In a rare public statement responding to Trump’s criticisms, Sessions said he remains determined to follow the law.
“As long as I am the Attorney General, I will continue to discharge my duties with integrity and honour, and this Department will continue to do its work in a fair and impartial manner according to the law and Constitution,” Sessions said.
Sessions’ recusal from the Russia investigation is also a key point of frustration for Trump, who once reportedly asked why he couldn’t order “my guys” at the “Trump Justice Department” to do what he wanted.
In an interview with The New York Times last July, Trump admitted he would not have nominated Sessions to be attorney general if he had know Sessions would recuse himself from the Russia investigation.
“Sessions should have never recused himself,” Trump said, “and if he was going to recuse himself, he should have told me before he took the job, and I would have picked somebody else.”
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