According to multiple sources, President Donald Trump has a short list of candidates to replace former Attorney General Jeff Sessions and outgoing Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi is being given serious consideration. Joining Bondi on that list includes also is a longtime friend of Trump, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.
Both candidates have problems that could derail their confirmation by the Senate. However, Trump likes Bondi as well as Christie because they supported Trump early in his campaign.
Bondi could face significant hurdles to confirmation over a controversy surrounding the $25,000 contribution her political action committee received from Trump’s foundation during her 2014 re-election bid.
Although a Florida ethics panel cleared Bondi of wrongdoing last year, her acceptance of the donation came under scrutiny because her office was at the time investigating Trump University for alleged fraud.
Many Trump allies like Bondi, who appears frequently on Fox News, and she has long enjoyed a good relationship with the President.
Meanwhile, Christie have long been reported to have bad blood with Jarred Kushner. Many feel there is bad blood between the two because of Christie’s role as US attorney in prosecuting Kushner’s father on 18 counts of tax evasion, witness tampering and illegal campaign donations.
Christie has been a friend of Trump’s since before the 2016 campaign, the former New Jersey governor has been critical of Trump’s handling of the Mueller investigation and instead praised Mueller amid the President’s public criticism of the special counsel.
Despite Trump’s friendship with Christie, the former New Jersey governor is not a pushover. He has also rejected arguments by Trump’s personal legal team that the President cannot obstruct justice, calling it “an outrageous claim” on ABC this summer.
Trump-friendly also include Solicitor General Noel Francisco, Rep. John Ratcliffe, R-Texas, former Judge John Michael Luttig, Judge Edith Jones, former Judge Janice Rogers Brown, retiring Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-South Carolina and Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina.