Well, of course, he has.
Courtesy of The Daily Beast:
A year-and-a-half before he took responsibility for overseeing the investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election, Matthew Whitaker, now the acting attorney general, had already reached a conclusion.
“The truth is there was no collusion with the Russians and the Trump campaign,” he said in an interview on the Wilkow Majority show. “There was interference by the Russians into the election, but that was not collusion with the campaign. That’s where the left seems to be combining those two issues.”
“The last thing they want right now is for the truth to come out, and for the fact that there’s not a single piece of evidence that demonstrates that the Trump campaign had any illegal or any improper relationships with the Russians. It’s that simple.”
What Whitaker was basing this declaration on is unclear. Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into the matter was just three months old at the time and it has—and remains—a lock box when it comes to its findings.
That is really just one troubling quote from this Whitaker fellow there were actually a lot more.
Courtesy of Mother Jones:
On June 9, 2017, Whitaker was asked on the David Webb Show about a congressional hearing the previous day, during which James Comey, whom Trump had recently fired as FBI director, had said that Trump had asked him to drop the bureau’s investigation of former national security adviser Michael Flynn. Some legal experts and members of Congress had suggested that Comey’s account suggested Trump had engaged in obstruction of justice. Whitaker disagreed. He contended, “There is no case for obstruction of justice because the president has all the power of the executive and delegates that to people like the FBI director and the attorney general…The president could and has in our nation’s history said stop investigating this person or please investigate this other person.” Whitaker belittled talk about obstruction of justice in this case as “hyperventilation.”
In another radio interview on the day of the Comey testimony, Whittaker dissed the Mueller investigation, remarking, “There’s really nothing here.” And he explicitly said Trump had the right to shut it down or control its direction: “This is power that is completely vested in the president…If he wanted to he could have told Jim [Comey] to stop investigating former [Defense Intelligence Agency] director Flynn. And he didn’t…I’m sure he made his preference known. Quite frankly, he’s president of the United States. He can do that.” Whitaker conceded that it might be fair to characterize such a presidential demand as “inappropriate,” but he insisted it would well be within Trump’s prerogatives.
Apparently, Whitaker was subjected to the same test that Brett Kavanaugh had to pass before being nominated to the Supreme Court and that is he said out loud that Trump can essentially do whatever the hell he wants.
There is a ton of blowback coming in response to Trump picking this guy, and it is beginning to look like Trump is not going to be able to keep him in the job on a permanent basis unless he can get confirmation from the Senate.
Already his appointment has triggered the #ProtectMueller protesters who took to the streets yesterday by the thousands.
RIGHT NOW: Protesters converging on Times Square with a message to #ProtectMueller the day after a massive shakeup in the Justice Dept.@samvanpee and I are on the ground for @MotherJones—follow along on Twitter and Instagram. pic.twitter.com/oBrLn9VDsM
— 🎥 Mark Helenowski (@MarkHelenowski) November 8, 2018
I think that Trump has really kicked a hornet’s nest here and is about to get stung all over his giant tangerine ass.