Donald Trump, the Gangster and his Corleone gangster family, do not give a damn about ethics, morals, or decency. The man has done nothing but illegal thus far. He has no respect for the law, the Constitution, nor does he respect our system of Checks and Balances. This Criminal Gangster must go. Once he does, I shall return to my country California.
Expatriate Dr. Sabri g. Bebawi
(CNN)President Donald Trump floated replacing Attorney General Jeff Sessions with Scott Pruitt as recently as this week, even as the scandal-ridden head of the Environmental Protection Agency has faced a growing list of negative headlines, according to people close to the President.
“He was 100% still trying to protect Pruitt because Pruitt is his fill-in for Sessions,” one source familiar with Trump’s thinking told CNN.
Though the President has, at times, floated several people a day for multiple positions in his administration that are already occupied, the proposition reveals just how frustrated Trump remains with Sessions because of his decision to recuse himself from overseeing the Russia investigation more than a year ago, while signaling how confident he has remained in Pruitt despite a dizzying number of ethics issues.
But Trump on Thursday said he continues to support Pruitt.
Asked by reporters as he boarded Air Force One if he has confidence in the embattled EPA official, Trump said: “I do.”
As with anything in the Trump White House, the situation remains fluid and circumstances continue to change from moment to moment. Press secretary Sarah Sanders told CNN Thursday the White House does “not have any plans for personnel changes at this time.”
Trump’s chief of staff John Kelly has not matched the President’s confidence in Pruitt, according to a source familiar with his thinking. He has advocated for firing him before the headlines get worse. A source familiar with how things have unfolded said Kelly called Pruitt Tuesday morning to ask if there were other issues that could become public that he needed to know about. These feelings were further exacerbated after Pruitt did interviews with Fox News and Washington Examiner, which a senior administration official said only made matters worse.
White House aides warned officials at the EPA that having Pruitt sit for interviews this week could backfire and told them to rethink their plans, a person familiar with their conversation said.
The aides cautioned that the EPA that if Pruitt did poorly under questioning — particularly televised questioning — it would be the quickest way to lose Trump’s confidence. In fact, the President was not impressed with Pruitt’s performance.
But Pruitt has remained in Trump’s good graces for the most part, though a source who is familiar with the matter said the President’s confidence in him has faltered some in light of the ethics issues. However, Trump is hesitant to fire him because he likes entertaining the idea of replacing Sessions with Pruitt eventually and feels confident that he will continue to advance his agenda at the EPA in the meanwhile.