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I hear and read about the news regarding these highly unprecedented and unusual interactions with Trump engaging with and interviewing candidates he will appoint as U.S. Attorneys.

Most of the news seems negative and concerning regarding the matter but all seems to indicate that this is perfectly legal and nothing about it is illegal but doing this goes against. . .

Question

  • What would be some of the typical reasons a U.S President would not want to interview or interact with a U.S. Attorney candidate?

News

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There are about 100 US attorneys. The position is a technical one, since the post is non-political. The requirements for the job are one's skills as a lawyer.

Presidents have a busy job, and for relatively minor appointments they may choose to act on the advice of the relevant department on the most suitable candidate. A president may simply feel that they cannot learn anything new from a face to face meeting that can't be done by the Department of Justice.

The president is not in a position to judge a candidate's skills as a lawyer, so a face to face interview is considered a waste of time. By making the appointment personally one is open to the accusation that one is making the appointment on political grounds rather than on merit.

The accusation of "arrogance" is the implication that Trump believes that his judgement, based on an interview, is better than that the appointment process used by the Dept. of Justice.

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  • It might be, but I decline to speculate. The question was well posed: Why have other presidents not held interviews.
    – James K
    Oct 21 '17 at 10:54
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    DAGs are not employees of the WH, but of the Justice Dept., so it would make more sense for the AG to interview them. Although it is not in the scope of the question, I think @DenisdeBernardy's point addresses an implication of the question & to personally interview people who have direct jurisdiction over you and your family's business operations is what makes this case particularly questionable.
    – rougon
    Oct 21 '17 at 11:29
  • @rougon These are reasonable points, but the question was not "what is wrong with Trump interviewing DAGs" It was "Why would POTUS not interview DAGs". I try to answer the question as posed.
    – James K
    Oct 21 '17 at 22:02

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