Earlier today, as the Inquisitr reported, in an interview with Fox & Friends‘ Ashley Earhardt published on YouTube, President Donald Trump criticized the Department of Justice, Jeff Sessions, Mueller’s Russia probe, distanced himself from Michael Cohen, and praised Paul Manafort.
The first person to formally respond to Trump’s criticism thus far is Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Sessions issued a rare public statement, pushing back against Donald Trump, CNN reports.
“While I am Attorney General, the actions of the Department of Justice will not be improperly influenced by political considerations. I demand the highest standards, and where they are not met, I take action. However, no nation has a more talented, more dedicated group of law enforcement investigators and prosecutors than the United States.”
As CNN noted, Trump criticized Sessions for recusing himself from the investigation into Russian election interference. “What kind of a man is this?!,” the POTUS asked, before continuing, claiming to have only given Sessions the job due to his loyalty, adding that Sessions “never took control” of the DOJ.
Jeff Sessions’ statement was also posted to Twitter by DOJ spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores.
As Bloomberg reported earlier today, two key Republican senators – Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Senator Chuck Grassley, the current Judiciary chairman – signaled that the POTUS would fire Sessions after November midterms, backing Trump, and claiming that the president has no faith in his AG.
Sessions is one of President Trump’s favorite targets, Bloomberg noted, and the POTUS has repeatedly criticized and mocked Sessions for recusing himself from Mueller’s Russia probe. If Trump was to replace Sessions, a new attorney general would likely take over the Russia investigation and fire Robert Mueller, Bloomberg concluded.
Statement from the Attorney General pic.twitter.com/eMF0CPXLZZ
— Sarah Isgur Flores (@SarahFloresDOJ) August 23, 2018
In the statement, Sessions praised American law enforcement investigators and prosecutors, contradicting Trump who, earlier today, as the Inquisitr noted, called the Department of Justice corrupt, repeatedly criticizing it, claiming that he now puts the word “justice” in quotation marks when tweeting about the DOJ.
Sessions defends himself in statement: “While I am Attorney General, the actions of the Department of Justice will not be improperly influenced by political considerations” https://t.co/HGIehA9s2f
— Bloomberg Politics (@bpolitics) August 23, 2018
Sessions’ praising of law enforcement investigators and prosecutors is clearly meant to be interpreted as the attorney general expressing support for Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian election interference. This, if one was to judge by Trump’s previous statements, will most probably not sit well with the president, who has referred to Mueller’s investigation as a “witch hunt,” claiming throughout the entirety of today’s interview with Fox & Friends’ Ashley Earhardt that that there has been “no collusion.”
As the Telegraph noted, Sessions was one of the first senators to support Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, but he has also been one of Trump’s most controversial nominees for the administration. Sessions is known for being rejected as a federal judge over concerns about his views on race and for his “staunchly” conservative views, the Telegraph concluded.