McCabe’s depiction of Jeff Sessions is pathetically unbelievable
by Quin Hillyer | February 19, 2019 06:27 PM
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Former acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe is having his moment in the sun, trying to sell a book making explosive allegations — but he undermines the believability of any of it by his outlandishly embittered descriptions of former Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
As a New York Times review of McCabe’s new book describes it, Sessions comes across as “openly racist,” with (now using McCabe’s own words) “trouble focusing” while “lacking basic knowledge.” In sum, reviewer Dwight Garner says that “the portrait of Sessions is of a man for whom merely ordering lunch seems to be above the timberline of his intellect and curiosity.”
This is sheer calumny and utterly unbelievable. On the racism charge — based not on alleged remarks about black Americans but about Irish-American FBI agents — my colleague James Gagliano has it right: “It defies credulity that any modern AG would ever utter such blatantly racist remarks around anyone — much less the acting director of the FBI.”Would Trump’s national emergency really be an “emergency”?Watch Full Screen to Skip Ads
It especially defies credulity considering Sessions’ own background of being blocked for a judgeship, and almost blocked from becoming attorney general, because of now-widely-discredited allegations of racism. Even if Sessions looked at the world through a racial lens, which he doesn’t, he’s not stupid enough to go around expressing it.
That supposed stupidity described by McCabe, though, is even more absurd. Allow, please, some directly personal observations. I live in Mobile, where Sessions lives. I’ve covered him closely for local and national publications for 21 years. I’ve had numerous in-depth conversations with the man, both on the record and off. The off-the-record ones, including several airport lunches when we found ourselves on the same flights between Mobile and the nation’s capital, were especially illuminating, because they involved Sessions at his most unguarded. They also showed him at his best and most thoughtful.
Because they were off the record, I would not divulge (nor do I specifically remember) the exact substance of what we discussed, but I certainly can relay impressions.