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Trump is still having buyer’s remorse about Jeff Sessions

He can’t over the attorney general’s recusal from the Russia investigation.

President Trump Hosts Leaders From California To Discuss Sanctuary Cities
Attorney General Jeff Sessions speaks in a meeting.
Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty Images
Li Zhou is a politics reporter at Vox, where she covers Congress and elections. Previously, she was a tech policy reporter at Politico and an editorial fellow at the Atlantic.

President Trump tweeted yet again on Tuesday to complain about Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Trump said, again, if he’d known that Sessions would recuse himself from all matters related to the Russia investigation, he’d never have chosen him as attorney general.

The implication: The ongoing Mueller investigation roiling his presidency is actually Sessions’s fault.

Tuesday’s tweet is just the latest in a series of attacks Trump has unleashed against Sessions, prompting speculation about whether he is (or was) planning to fire the attorney general or push him to step down.

Just last week, following an interview Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) did addressing Sessions’s recusal from the Russian investigation, Trump said he wished he’d picked someone different for the job.

He went on to quote a former US attorney who had called Sessions’s recusal an “unforced betrayal” of the president.

Since the start of the administration, Sessions, the FBI, and the Department of Justice have been among the president’s recurring social media targets. Many critics have said the posts are part of a broader effort to discredit the Russia inquiry.

The president has also repeatedly sought to shift attention away from the Russia investigation, questioning why Sessions hasn’t done more to probe the activities of Hillary Clinton and the Obama administration.

According to a September New York Times report, Trump’s gripes about Sessions’s recusal are longstanding. He reportedly “berated” Sessions following the appointment of special counsel Robert Mueller and pressed Sessions to resign. Sessions even submitted a resignation letter to the White House, though in the end, he did not leave.

Sessions recused himself after the revelation that he participated in undisclosed meetings with the Russian ambassador to the US during the 2016 campaign. At the time, Trump seemed to feel more warmly toward Sessions and even came to the attorney general’s defense.

A lot sure can change in a year.

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