NY Times Open Letter to Rod Rosenstein Is Spot On

The NY Times wrote an open letter to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in the wake of the James Comey firing.

I am not all that convinced Rosenstein threatened to resign after being asked to write a letter to offer justification for Trump to fire James Comey. The reason being is, it doesn’t appear that Rosenstein made the threat. Somebody told a reporter he considered it.

Still, Rosenstein is in a precarious situation. Donald Trump did use his letter as an excuse for firing Comey. It’s absurd to think Trump decided to follow through with Comey’s termination based on the latter’s handling of the Hillary Clinton investigation after Trump lauded him over it for months.

Some key points in the letter:

Given the sterling reputation you brought into this post — including a 27-year career in the Justice Department under five administrations, and the distinction of being the longest-serving United States attorney in history — you no doubt feel a particular anguish, and obligation to act. As the author of the memo that the president cited in firing Mr. Comey, you are now deeply implicated in that decision.

and

You must also know that in ordering you to write the memo, Mr. Trump exploited the integrity you have earned over nearly three decades in public service, spending down your credibility as selfishly as he has spent other people’s money throughout his business career. We can only hope that your lack of an explicit recommendation to fire Mr. Comey reflects your own refusal to go as far as the president wanted you to.

It is where the rubber meets the road for Mr. Rosenstein. He can protect his reputation as one who has served faithfully in several presidential administrations and conduct a thorough and credible investigation going forward, or he can allow his reputation to contain the stench of Donald Trump forever.