She has been spotted here and there in Atlanta, with and without her husband, Comer Yates. At the theater. At a restaurant. And on Wednesday, at a Carter Center event that featured an ex-colleague, former U.S. attorney general Eric Holder.
Sally Yates received a standing ovation at that last event, just for walking in. Over the last three weeks, since she was so dramatically sacked by President Donald Trump, Yates has fueled the dreams of Georgia Democrats as a 2018 candidate for governor who might be able to woo white voters — especially white women — back to the party.
Yates has neither done nor said anything in public to encourage such talk, or to discourage it. And when a member of that Wednesday audience asked about her appetite for public office, the former Justice Department official refused to break character. She remained an inscrutable sphinx.
“I am just here in the audience,” she demurred. That was followed by another standing round of applause at an Atlanta gathering of lawyers the next day.
In truth, Georgia Democrats might want to steel themselves for disappointment. The situation in Washington has become a deal more serious since Yates was handed her pink slip — in ways that could see her enmeshed, as a material witness, in a brewing fight between the U.S. Senate and the White House. One with heavy constitutional overtones.