“As I submit my resignation effective on May 11, I am grateful to you for the opportunity to serve: for the courtesy and humor you often display in our personal conversations, and for the goals you set in your inaugural address: patriotism, unity, safety, education, and prosperity, because “a nation exists to serve its citizens.” The Department of Justice pursues those goals while operating in accordance with the rule of law. The rule of law is the foundation of America. It secures our freedom, allows our citizens to flourish, and enables our nation to serve as a model of liberty and justice for all.”

— An actual quote from Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein’s resignation letter

Dearest Mr. President,

The Justice Department made rapid progress in achieving the administration’s law enforcement priorities — namely, to use the law enforcement tools on literally any subject except for you. We have staffed the department and the U.S. attorneys’ offices with skilled and principled leaders, sometimes both, devoted to the values that make America great — in the sense that “making America great” means “getting you into office and keeping you there.”

Our nation is safer, our elections are more secure, and, most important of all, our citizens are better informed about all the ways you were not involved in covert foreign influence efforts and schemes to commit fraud.

I am just so grateful to you, Mr. President, for the opportunity to serve the American people — but who embodies the people better than you, a living god who can do no wrong, legally? Donald Trump is one of the best things about America. You have displayed such incredible courtesy and humor in our personal conversations. I understand that you feel the need to hide these virtues from the rest of the world, but I am so glad you had the courage to share them with me.

Your courtesy and humor go without saying — why, I remember the time you made Reince Priebus swat a fly, and I’ve always thought that was a display of both. Your courtesy and humor are only exceeded by your wisdom and wit, or is it the other way around? You are as beautiful as a freshly dedicated Trump property.

Am I Deutsche Bank? Because I want to get you a loan, and I trust every statement you have made about your personal valuations. Is that a mirror in your administration? Because after giving my soul away, I’m going to miss seeing myself in it. Are you holding a copy of the entire unredacted Mueller report, or is that how large your hands are normally? I honestly cannot tell. Also, you smell nice.

If I ever attempted to record you, it was only so I could have a treasury of your remarks to pore over on long winter nights and re-cherish each pearl of wisdom.

Your pores are very clear, by the way, and you have an eloquence like that of Julius Caesar — although he spoke Latin, which almost nobody understands, whereas you speak English, the greatest English of anyone, and are understood immediately by all. Whenever you make statements, or issue new guidance about immigration, I see people weeping, probably from the beauty. I don’t weep. I smile.

Here at the Justice Department, we enforce the law without fear or favor, because justice is not partisan (though if it were, it would be Republican, 100 percent), and truth is not determined by opinion poll (although it is true that every opinion poll released places Trump at the very top!). We ignore fleeting distractions, such as the Mueller report, because a republic that endures is not governed by the news cycle. Indeed, it might be better off without a news cycle at all, especially if that news continues to say mean things about the president.

Here at the Justice Department, we keep the faith, we follow the rules, and we put America first, not in the sense of the folks who wanted us to pursue a bad, insular policy and ignore the rise of Nazism, but the other sense. I’m sure there is another sense.



Read more from Alexandra Petri: