Jed Shugerman was quoted in a Business Insider article about Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ decision not to recuse himself from overseeing the proceedings of President Donald Trump’s longtime lawyer Michael Cohen.
One expert told Business Insider that Sessions’s decision not to recuse himself further goes to show that Mueller has faith in the Department of Justice (DOJ) to handle the investigation properly. Knowing that Sessions could well oversee the case, Mueller, who has been under threat of firing by the president, made the determination that his involvement would not prevent law enforcement from fairly carrying out the investigation.
“So, the bottom line is, it felt like it was important for him to spread that work out as a hedge against [Mueller’s] firing,” Jed Shugerman, a Fordham University law professor, told Business Insider. “But it also indicated a certain degree of trust in the leadership of the DOJ to manage the case. If he really didn’t trust Rosenstein and Sessions, that probably would’ve cut against him making that move.”
Shugerman mentioned the recent report that Sessions had told Trump he would resign if the president ousted Rosenstein as evidence that Sessions was someone who could be entrusted to defend the rule of law.
“I’m not a huge fan of Sessions, but it suggests to me that Sessions is not doing Trump’s bidding but is trying to do his job,” he said. “Mueller has some faith that the DOJ would manage this appropriately, and that included Sessions.”