By Frank Bowman
Readers of this site who don’t also take the New York Times should consider reading a Times Op-Ed by Neal Katyal and Ken Starr, linked here. It relates a little-remembered coda to Robert Bork’s decision to acquiesce in Richard Nixon’s order to fire Watergate Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox. Bork, to his immense credit, appointed a solid replacement for Cox in Leon Jaworski, and promulgated an internal DOJ regulation making it extremely difficult for the president to fire the new guy. That regulation has long since lapsed, to be replaced by the less protective one under which Robert Mueller operates. Nonetheless, something like it could be implemented without congressional action.
The key questions, however, are whether Attorney General Jeff Sessions would countenance such a regulation, and, even more centrally, whether Mr. Trump would squelch the idea. The likelihood that either or both would allow it seems very small indeed. Still, unlike a lot of stuff that appears in the national press about the Mueller investigation, this is a reasonable proposal from two people with long experience at DOJ.