President Trump is on a tear these days to weed out those in the swamp who should have been removed long ago. He has plenty of slugs to choose from. The place is literally filled with them. I still contend they should have been vetted and purged from the various agencies from the very beginning. But here we are.
Trump has been asking since last month why Justice Department official Bruce Ohr still has a job. He’s definitely getting ready to fire Obama’s top swamp slug.
The president asked, “how the hell” he is still employed after he testified on Capitol Hill about his relationship with former British spy Christopher Steele and his ties to the now infamous anti-Trump dossier. That’s a very good question and I think we’d all like an answer to it.
“How the hell is Bruce Ohr still employed at the Justice Department?” Trump tweeted. “Disgraceful! Witch Hunt!” Truer words were never spoken in my opinion.
From Fox News in August:
“Republicans allege that Ohr played a key role in selling the so-called Steele dossier, commissioned by the opposition research firm Fusion GPS and paid for by Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee. Ohr was grilled over his involvement behind closed doors on Tuesday by the House Oversight and Judiciary committees
“Messages indicate Ohr continued to communicate with dossier author Steele after the FBI fired him as a source in late 2016 due to his contacts with the media.
“I don’t know if it’s improper but I want to know who at DOJ knew and it certainly looks like he continued to meet with Mr. Steele after the FBI had terminated their relationship with Mr. Steele,” Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, told Fox News ahead of the Tuesday meeting.
“Ohr’s wife Nellie worked at Fusion as a Russian specialist and did research that formed part of the dossier.
“Ohr, who joined the Justice Department in 1991 and eventually was named the associate deputy attorney general before being demoted amid the investigation into his meetings with Steele, did not reply to questions shouted by reporters before his hearing on Tuesday.
“At least seven Republican House members traveled to Washington over the August recess for the interview. No Democratic lawmakers appeared to attend, though staff were in the room.
“Democrats say the entire GOP investigation is an attempt to undermine Special Counsel Robert Mueller. They have criticized the Republicans’ focus on Ohr as overblown and misleading.
“With Paul Manafort in jail, Michael Cohen in court, and a host of longtime Trump confidants cooperating with federal prosecutors, we can understand why Republicans are increasingly desperate to create a distraction and undermine the Department of Justice as a hedge against what the investigators may find,” Reps. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., and Elijah E. Cummings, D-Md., said Wednesday in a joint statement.
“The two lawmakers added: “Mr. Ohr has already been forced to endure President Trump’s baseless Twitter attacks. Yesterday’s interview was merely a doubling down of that strategy.” Nadler and Cummings serve as ranking members on the House Judiciary and Oversight Committees respectively.”
Trump had previously gone after Ohr and said that it was a “disgrace” for Ohr to be in the Justice Department and added that he suspects he’ll “very quickly” revoke his security clearance.
That tweet, combined with his revoking of the security clearance for former CIA Director John Brennan, has drawn strong criticism from a number of people in the intelligence community and raised questions of whether Trump may be obstructing the Mueller investigation.
Trump wants Ohr fired over the Russia investigation and he’s also taking swipes at Attorney General Jeff Sessions over it. “Will Bruce Ohr, whose family received big money for helping to create the phony, dirty and discredited Dossier, ever be fired from the Jeff Sessions ‘Justice’ Department? A total joke!” Trump tweeted. Hard to argue with that sentiment.
If Ohr has his security clearance revoked, he will be instantly severely hampered in doing his job. Which makes the argument that he should just be fired as President Trump wants.
Ohr was demoted late last year after it was revealed he had contacts with Christopher Steele who authored the Russia dossier. Ohr’s wife, Nellie, also worked for Fusion GPS during the campaign. Trump and other Republicans have used those ties to argue the special counsel’s Russia probe is tainted by bias.
“‘Bruce Ohr is at the center of FALSE ALLEGATIONS which led to a multi-million dollar investigation into what apparently didn’t happen.’ Darrell Issa, House Oversight. We can take out the word ‘apparently,’” Trump said in another tweet, citing the Republican congressman’s comments on Fox News.
Trump is right to call for removing Ohr. I’m just sad it wasn’t done much, much sooner.