Wednesday on MSNBC’s “Live,” Democratic National Committee chairman Tom Perez said President Donald Trump removing Attorney General Jeff Sessions and appointing Matthew Whitaker as acting attorney general was “worse than” the Watergate scandal.
Perez said, “There’s a law, and there’s a test that applies to what he just did. The law is the Vacancies Reform Act. You can argue that it’s ambiguous whether he could do what he just did. There’s a test that is very unambiguous called the smell test. This doesn’t pass the smell test.”
He added, “I worked in the Justice Department starting with Bush 1. I’m proud of the work I did, starting in the late ’80s as a career prosecutor. The common practice, the custom, and it was well informed, was when an attorney general left, you had a Senate-confirmed person in the seat so that you couldn’t have something happen like this. On a certain level, this is worse than Watergate because the Saturday Night Massacre, he kept firing Senate-confirmed people until he found Bork who was a Senate-confirmed person to do this. And the other thing about the privilege I had of working at the Department of Justice is we had a duty not only to seek justice but to ensure the appearance of justice, and this so violates that.”
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