- President Donald Trump told Fox News the only reason he tapped Jeff Sessions to be attorney general was because of his loyalty during the 2016 presidential election.
- “He was an original supporter,” Trump said.
- The president also suggested Democrats have more power and influence in the Justice Department than Sessions.
- “I put in an attorney general that never took control of the Justice Department,” Trump said.
President Donald Trump on Thursday told Fox News the only reason he tapped Jeff Sessions to be attorney general was because of his loyalty during the 2016 presidential election.
Sessions “was on the campaign,” Trump said. “You know, the only reason I gave him the job is because I felt loyalty. He was an original supporter.”
In the interview, Trump also bashed Sessions for recusing himself from investigations involving the Trump campaign, including the probe into Russian election interference.. The attorney general did so after uproar over failing to disclose during his confirmation hearing meetings with the Russian ambassador to the US during the 2016 campaign.
“Sessions recused himself, which he shouldn’t have done, or he should have told me,” Trump said. “He took my job, and then he said, ‘I’m going to recuse myself.’ I said, ‘What kind of man is this?'”
Trump hammers Jeff Sessions: "He took the job and then he said, 'I'm going to recuse myself' I said, 'what kind of a man is this?' And by the way, he was on the campaign. The only reason I gave him the job I felt loyalty." (via Fox) pic.twitter.com/r9KvpyX033
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) August 23, 2018
The president also suggested Democrats have more power and influence in the Justice Department than Sessions.
“I put in an attorney general that never took control of the Justice Department,” he said.
Trump has faced legal turmoil on multiple fronts this week. Trump’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen, implicated him in campaign finance violations related to “hush money” payments to two women who have alleged affairs with Trump.
Simultaneously, Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, was found guilty on eight felony counts and faces up to 80 years in prison.
Trump has since slammed Cohen and warned people not to hire him as a lawyer. But he’s expressed sympathy for Manafort, prompting questions about whether Trump will consider pardoning him.