On Friday morning, President Donald Trump insisted that he doesn’t actually know Matthew Whitaker, the man he just appointed the new acting Attorney General.
“I don’t know Matt Whitaker” Trump claimed to reporters outside the White House, explaining instead that he was just a guy who worked for Jeff Sessions.
Hardly a ringing endorsement. And, one that’s made even more bizarre when taken with the fact that Trump reportedly brought Whitaker into his administration in the first place, because he liked watching him rant and rave on TV about the Mueller probe Whitaker now oversees.
The reason Matt Whitaker is in this position at the Justice Department is literally because he caught the attention of the President and the people in the White House because of what he was saying about Mueller.
She later clarified that she specifically meant that Trump had watched Whitaker on television, and liked what he saw.
This, apparently, was all part of Whitaker’s grand plan to snag a Trump administration position. On Twitter, St. Johns law professor John Barrett claimed Whitaker had told him specifically in 2017 that he was flying to New York for a cable news appearance with the expressed hope of being noticed by Trump—something, he claimed, he could then parlay into a judicial appointment.
But while Trump may have fallen for Whitaker’s plan, the new acting AG’s colorful past has reportedly come as a shock to others in the White House. “It was not widely known among White House staff that he’d commented repeatedly on the special counsel’s investigation in interviews and on television,” according to CNN, which is insane considering those comments appear to be what got him the job in the first place.
Trump insisting he doesn’t actually know the guy he just promoted to the top law enforcement position in the country seems like it might not bode well for Whitaker’s future in the federal government. But beyond that, the guy has got serious problems.
No, I don’t mean the possible illegality of his recent appointment. Or the fact that nearly a third of the country’s state attorneys general have publicly demanded he recuse himself from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s ongoing investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. Or even the fact that before he was promoted to the top law enforcement position in the country, he was busy scamming the hot tub market.
What I mean is that he’s not smart, and I’m not just talking about the shitposting.
He wants to overturn Marbury v. Madison, the landmark case that effectively established the Supreme Court as the ultimate authority on the constitutionality of the law.
He’s also “very concerned” about any potential judges who have a “secular world view,” and believes anyone on the judiciary should have a “biblical view” instead. What sort of biblical view? “New Testament,” Whitaker explained during a 2014 debate. “What I know is as long as they have that world view, that they’ll be a good judge.” Good to know.
Oh, and perhaps most importantly—at least in the immediate—Whitaker’s now finds himself put in charge of an investigation he’s publicly called “a little fishy” and “ridiculous,” which doesn’t exactly bode well for anyone hoping he’d be an impartial supervisor of the Mueller investigation.
So while Donald Trump might not know the guy, they really should spend some time together. I bet they’d get along great!