Trump vows to rid Justice Department of 'lingering stench'

25 September, 2018, 06:47 | Author: Clarence Schmidt
  • Reversing course President Donald Trump delayed the release of classified FBI documents on Friday after the Justice Department and foreign allies objected amid concerns that their publication may damage the investigation of Russian election interference

Hours after the New York Times reported that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein suggested past year secretly recording Trump at the White House to expose the chaos consuming the administration, Trump told a packed rally, "Just look at what is being exposed in our Justice Department".

Lieu's comments followed the New York Times' bombshell report Friday afternoon detailing comments Rosenstein reportedly made early in Trump's presidency.

Additionally, sources tell ABC News that, according to the memos, Rosenstein told McCabe he could recruit members of the president's Cabinet to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from office for being unfit.

According to The Times, none of Rosenstein's proposals were acted upon and it remains unclear the level of seriousness Rosenstein had when making the suggestions.

In response to the story, McCabe's attorney's issued the following statement to ABC News: "Andrew McCabe drafted memos to memorialize significant discussions he had with high-level officials and preserved them so he would have an accurate, contemporaneous record of those discussions". Unidentified others have been said to discuss it, including an unnamed senior administration official who wrote an Op-Ed for The New York Times. McCabe's written account from that day also says Rosenstein raised the possibility of an effort to invoke the 25th Amendment, while Page's accounts of the same discussion do not mention that, the person said.

Rosenstein denied the Times story as "inaccurate and factually incorrect" in a statement that also blamed anonymous sources promoting personal agendas.

"I assume that talking about wiring the President, talking about the 25th amendment is not being on the team", Wallace pressed further. However Sean Hannity, who has perhaps even more influence with the president than Ingraham or Pirro, said Trump should not do that.

McCabe has no knowledge of how the memos were made available, said his lawyer Michael Bromwich.


Rosenstein issued a swift denial.

In his interview Pompeo, formerly the Central Intelligence Agency director, said he had "told it to junior folks at the Central Intelligence Agency, and the state department: we need everyone who's engaged in helping achieve President Trump's mission". The president has said he believes the documents will bolster his argument that investigators in special counsel Robert Mueller's Russian Federation probe are biased against him. President Trump fires Mr Comey, and Andrew McCabe becomes acting director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Later that month, Rosenstein announced the appointment of former FBI Director Robert Mueller to oversee the continuing inquiry into Russia's interference in the 2016 election, igniting Trump's bitter campaign against his own Justice Department.

The news was first reported by the New York Times.

During Francisco's confirmation hearings a year ago, the Senate Judiciary Committee's top Democrat, Dianne Feinstein, mentioned his expressed support for Trump's travel ban and urged him in a letter to "publicly commit to refuse any order or request - whether express or implied - to interfere in the Special Counsel's investigation".

The president's declaration on Friday appears to indicate he is willing to let the Justice Department's inspector general - which is already conducting an internal investigation of how the Russian Federation probe has been handled - review the material rather than release it publicly.

Rep. Mark Meadows, a North Carolina Republican who chairs the conservative Freedom Caucus, said in a tweet that "if this story is true, it underscores a gravely troubling culture at FBI/DOJ and the need for FULL transparency". But Mr. Rosenstein was caught off guard when Mr. Trump cited the memo in the firing, and he began telling people that he feared he had been used.

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