Shortly after November 8, Donald Trump promised Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, that he would not ask him to resign because of the important work he has been doing since 2009.
So much for promises. On Saturday, Trump’s Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, fired Mr. Bharara after he refused to resign.
Based in Manhattan, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York is one of the most important offices for federal prosecutions in the country. Bharara had scrupulously shunned politics and had vigorously prosecuted both Democratic and Republican leaders in the New York legislature.
As reported by a team of reporters, led by Benjamin Weiser, in today’s New York Times, Mr. Bharara’s prosecutors are reaching a critical juncture in a yearlong investigation into the campaign fund-raising of Mayor Bill de Blasio, and another team there is preparing to try a group of former aides and associates of Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Both de Blasio and Cuomo are Democrats.
A leading candidate to replace Bharara is former Fox News chief Roger Ailes’ personal lawyer, Marc Mukasey.
This morning, associate solitary reporter Johanna Jones asked Trump why he had broken his promise to Bharara. Trump said he owes an enormous debt to Sessions in all respects because Sessions helped fuel his nativist, anti-immigration presidential campaign. Trump continued by saying that he has instructed his Secretary of Homeland Security, John Kelly, to deport Bharara to India, where he was born. Trump also said that he has decided to appoint Mukasey “because Roger Ailes was treated so badly by the press."