SCOOP: Three White House staffers have been identified for leaking classified info. POTUS will fire ‘multiple people’ when he returns to DC.
SCOOP INFO: I’m told the names of the leakers are being run by the Office of Government Ethics, which is why they aren’t immediately fired
— Trey Yingst (@TreyYingst) May 22, 2017
Why wait until Trump gets back from his trip to fire people and give them an opportunity to leak further while he’s away, particularly now that they know the jig is up? If the answer is that they’ve already been removed from their positions at the White House to prevent them from doing more damage, why is OAN the only outlet that seems to know that? That would be a highly visible thing, plus this West Wing leaks like a sieve. If people had been busted, that information would have spread to the media in minutes, notwithstanding the sudden fear inside the White House of leak prosecutions.
And why does the administration need OGE’s advice on how to proceed? OGE consults on White House hiring, to make sure that new aides are taking steps to resolve conflicts of interest between their new government duties and their business interests. Leaking is a criminal matter. DOJ would be the relevant agency, I would think, not OGE. Even stranger, OGE has been conspicuously hostile to Trump and his administration. The director, Walter Shaub, pilloried Trump publicly for his weak attempt to resolve his own conflicts of interest a week before he took office, then accused Trump’s lawyer of claiming that she didn’t want him to certify that his financial disclosure was true by signing it. Just today the Times reported that Shaub has been sending letters to federal agencies asking for a list of former lobbyists who’ve received waivers to work there. Annoyed, the White House sent Shaub a letter asking him to withdraw his requests and challenging his authority to issue them in the first place. He’s not a guy whom Team Trump would want to involve in a matter as sensitive as firing leakers unless they absolutely had to. And I’m not sure why they’d have to.