President Trump over the summer repeatedly urged senior Senate Republicans, including the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, to end the panel’s investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election, according to a half dozen lawmakers and aides. Mr. Trump’s requests were a highly unusual intervention from a president into a legislative inquiry involving his family and close aides. [New York Times]
THERE HAS not been a worse secretary of state than Rex Tillerson. He has begun to dismantle the State Department, which is second to his disrespect for foreign service officers and career diplomats.
From a recent report
In the following months, Mr. Tillerson launched a reorganization that he has said will be the most important thing he will do, and he has hired two consulting companies to lead the effort. Since he decided before even arriving at the State Department to slash its budget by 31 percent, many in the department have always seen the reorganization as a smoke screen for drastic cuts.
Mr. Tillerson has frozen most hiring and recently offered a $25,000 buyout in hopes of pushing nearly 2,000 career diplomats and civil servants to leave by October 2018.
His small cadre of aides have fired some diplomats and gotten others to resign by refusing them the assignments they wanted or taking away their duties altogether. Among those fired or sidelined were most of the top African-American and Latino diplomats, as well as many women, difficult losses in a department that has long struggled with diversity.
Trump was thrilled to have an international businessman working for him but reveled more in undermining Tillerson whenever he could. Once Tillerson called Trump a “moron” it was officially over. He never spoke for the president so he won’t be missed.
CIA Director Mike Pompeo has ingratiated himself with Trump. The PDB Pompeo delivers on foreign threats to his boss has fostered a relationship. He would carry Trump’s message to leaders with authority. His politics are as bad as Trump’s but elections have consequences. Pompeo is experienced and educated. What he might do at State can’t be worse than Tillerson.
Senator Tom “waterboarding isn’t torture” Cotton has been talked about for months to replace Pompeo at the CIA.. Cotton is a veteran and a respected member of the Senate. He will turn the CIA back to the bad old days.
This whole cast switch was concocted by John Kelly, the chief enabler of President Trump, according to the New York Times.
All of this drama goes on while North Korea continues to get closer to a deliverable nuclear weapon that can hit the U.S.
Assume the tax bill will pass… and with experts predicting Roy Moore is headed for victory, President Trump will feel more emboldened than ever.
Source familiar confirms to me that ADM Robert S. Harward has been talking to the White House about becoming CIA Director.
— Ken Dilanian (@KenDilanianNBC) November 30, 2017