President Donald Trump’s firing of FBI Director James Comey is an unwelcome distraction for a White House already straining to enact its agenda and could hamper its efforts to pass a repeal of Obamacare and cut taxes.
Comey’s ouster on May 9 polarized Democrats and unnerved some Republicans, overshadowing almost all other business at both the Capitol and the White House. Trump’s aides and his congressional allies struggled on Wednesday to defend the decision, diverting precious time from other key issues.
With limited manpower and political capital, the White House and Congress can wage war on a finite number of fronts. Trump is already mired in a battle over health care and is preparing for a fight over government spending, pushing his plan to slash corporate and individual taxes further into the future. All of that gets harder with the need to confirm a new FBI director and fend off demands for an independent Russia investigation.