Trump and Andrew McCabe, January 23, 2018

It is NOT NORMAL for the president to ask the acting FBI Director how he voted in the 2016 presidential election. It is also NOT NORMAL for the president to be angered by the fact that the acting FBI Director’s wife received money from a political action committee affiliated with the minority party during a run for the Virginia state Senate two years earlier.

Source: the Washington Post.

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No Funding Request for CFPB, January 18, 2018

It is NOT NORMAL for the director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to request no funding. Some, I suppose, might applaud the reduction of bureaucracy but this bureau was created because of the 2008 financial crisis and was designed as a check on predatory lenders, debt collectors, and fraud and deception in the financial industry. A request for zero dollars for the quarter certainly seems to indicate a lack of interest in serving as that check on the part of the current director.

Source: Politico.

Joe Arpaio Running for Senate, January 9, 2018

It is NOT NORMAL that a man who repeatedly endorsed the birther slander against the previous president, failed to investigate hundreds of sex crimes, routinely mistreated the inmates under his care as sheriff, misused public funds, framed someone for attempted murder, and was ultimately convicted of criminal contempt when he refused to stop racial profiling after being ordered to do so by a court is apparently a viable candidate for the Senate in Arizona.

Sources: the New York Times, USA Today.

Trump and Sessions and Obstruction of Justice, January 5, 2018

It is NOT NORMAL for the president, as reported by the New York Times, to expect legal protection from the Attorney General. It is NOT NORMAL for the president to plaintively request “my Roy Cohn.” It is NOT NORMAL for an aide to the Attorney General to actively seek damaging information on the then-director of the FBI, citing a goal of one negative story per day. Finally, it is NOT NORMAL for a White House lawyer to attempt to mislead the president about the feasibility of firing the then-director of the FBI in hopes of preventing an act he believed would be obstruction of justice.

Source: the New York Times.

Senators Refer Author of Trump Dossier for Criminal Charges, January 5, 2018

It is NOT NORMAL for two Senators on the Judiciary Committee to refer a witness to the FBI for criminal charges without consulting with colleagues from the other party. This is particularly troubling because it, at a minimum, has the appearance of attempting to deflect from the investigation of collusion between Russia and the president’s campaign.

Update: With the release of the Fusion GPS testimony by a Senator from the minority party, this criminal referral looks even more craven.

Source: Politico, the Washington Post.

Trump Nominating Giuliani Crony as U.S. Attorney, January 3, 2018

It is NOT NORMAL for the president to personally interview and handpick a political ally for the United States Attorney job in New York. Typically, the president is not involved with the interview process for such positions. This is particularly alarming because the president, his businesses, and members of his family may be under investigation by this attorney.

Update: a New York Senator has announced that she will use her “blue-slip prerogative” to attempt to block this nomination.

Sources: Time, The Hill.

Trump International Hotel in Washington D.C., December 28, 2017

It is NOT NORMAL for the president to continue to be involved with his private businesses, specifically the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D. C. According to the director of revenue management for the hotel, ” . . . he’s definitely still involved. . . . he was asking about banquet revenues and demographics. And, he asked if his presidency hurt the businesses.”

Source: the Daily Beast.