In fact, it’s hard to remember any time that he has been so critical of the president’s words or actions. But apparently, his comments to The New York Times about Attorney General Jeff Sessions were a bridge too far.
“Sessions should have never recused himself and if he was going to recuse himself he should have told me before he took the job and I would have picked somebody else,” Trump said in one of his candid Oval Office sit-downs with the Times.
“Stinging words,” Carlson said on his Fox News show Thursday evening. “But this morning, Sessions seem to brush them off.” Carlson was unable to do the same.
The anchor began by giving Trump the benefit of the doubt with a long caveat about how he is “a 71-year-old political novice” who is “all of a sudden the subject of a “vague, open-ended investigation, whose goal may be to imprison him and his family.” No wonder he ended up “lashing out” at the people around him, “even and especially the ones try to help you the most.”
“So that’s probably what’s going on. And yet, attacking Jeff Sessions was still a useless, destructive act,” Carlson declared. “The first rule in politics, as in war, as in life, don’t shoot the friendlies. Sessions is the closest ally Trump has in the administration, one of the very few who even understands why he won in the first place.” We have to assume Carlson was not referring to Russian interference.
Carlson went on to praise Sessions for making the personal sacrifice of what could have been a lifetime seat in the Senate in order to back Trump and join his White House, calling him “the most effective” member of Trump’s Cabinet. “He didn’t do this to get rich and certainly not to become more popular,” he said. “He instantly became less. You’ll remember that many of his former colleagues slandered him as a bigot during his confirmation hearings.”
“In an administration brimming with opportunists and ideological saboteurs, who literally couldn’t be less interested in what voters think, Sessions has never lost sight and the lessons of the last election,” Carlson said. “In return, the president attacked him in an interview with the ‘failing’ New York Times. That’s not just criticism, it’s an insult. It’s also a worrisome sign that the president may be forgetting who is on his side.”
“Goldman Sachs did not elect Donald Trump,” Carlson said, taking a shot at Steve Bannon, Steve Mnuchin, and Gary Cohn, all of whom spent time at the investment bank. “The hope is that what happened yesterday was just a stress-related aberration, the political equivalent of yelling at your kids we had a bad day at the office. If so, it will not be hard to fix this. Going forward, pay a little less attention to The New York Times, pay a little more to Matt Drudge.”
“And for God’s sake, lay off Jeff Sessions,” Carlson concluded. “He is your friend. One of the very few you have in Washington.”