We’ve seen it time and time again. One of Donald Trump’s underlings gets backed into a legal corner as a result of doing Trump’s bidding, and then has to decide whether to remain loyal or cut a plea deal against Trump. Whenever it happens, Trump dangles something at that person – a new job, an imaginary pardon, you name it – in the hope of preventing that person from flipping. Now it’s happened with Matt Whitaker.
This week the House Judiciary Committee publicly informed Matt Whitaker that it had found proof he was lying when he claimed under oath that he had never discussed the Robert Mueller probe with Donald Trump. This was a polite way of letting Whitaker know that he’s going to prison for felony perjury unless he cuts a plea deal against Trump and/or publicly confesses to Trump’s obstruction crimes during followup hearings.
This occurred just as Matt Whitaker’s time as Acting Attorney General is coming to an end. So now Donald Trump has decided to hire Whitaker permanently as a “senior counselor” at the Department of Justice, according to Bloomberg. So what does a senior counselor do? In this instance, Whitaker will likely get paid to just sort of be there, since he’s already proven he’s not good at anything.
This isn’t the first time Donald Trump has given one of his associates a new or better job, just as the person was coming under legal scrutiny in Trump-related scandals, and was thus going to need to decide whether to cut a plea deal. For instance, Trump hired John Bolton as National Security Adviser just days after the Bolton-connected company Cambridge Analytica got busted.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report