President Trump has been criticizing Attorney General Jeff Sessions in recent days for not investigating Hillary Clinton over her emails and her family foundation’s activities. But those comments, which are widely seen as Trump’s pretense for potentially firing Sessions, are a reversal of the president’s view about Clinton just after the election.
“I don’t want to hurt the Clintons, I really don’t,” Trump said in a Nov. 22 interview with The New York Times. “She went through a lot and suffered greatly in many different ways, and I am not looking to hurt them at all. The campaign was vicious.”
That comment itself was a reversal from Trump’s rhetoric on the campaign trail, where chants of “Lock Her Up!” were a common theme at Trump campaign rallies.
“If I win, I am going to instruct my attorney general to get a special prosecutor to look into your situation, because there’s never been so many lies, so much deception,” Trump said in the second presidential debate with Clinton.
Clinton’s alleged criminality has come full circle for Trump as he has grown increasingly frustrated with Sessions for recusing himself from any investigation of potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian government. Sessions’ decision, made in March, paved the way for the appointment of Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
On Monday, Trump took to Twitter to attack the “beleaguered” Sessions for not looking into “Crooked Hillary’s crimes.” On Tuesday, the former real estate mogul asserted that Sessions had taken “a VERY weak position” on Clinton.
In addition to deciding to recuse himself from the Trump-Russia probe, Sessions also pledged before his confirmation to recuse himself from any additional investigations into Clinton.
Sessions said in his confirmation hearing that because of his politically charged comments about Clinton during the campaign, “I do believe that that could place my objectivity in question.”
“I believe the proper thing for me to do would be for me to recuse myself.”