President Donald Trump “lashed out” at acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker for letting prosecutors file charges that make him “look bad,” according to a new report from CNN.
Trump was reportedly angry about federal prosecutors referencing his allegedly illegal actions in the case against his former lawyer and fixer, Michael Cohen. As previously reported by the Inquisitr, Cohen was sentenced to three years in prison for crimes which include hush money payments to adult film actress Stormy Daniels and Playboy playmate Karen McDougal. The payments, Cohen claims, were made on behalf and at the direction of Donald Trump during the 2016 campaign.
According to CNN‘s sources, although Trump was frustrated by prosecutors who Whitaker oversees, he did not direct his acting attorney general to terminate the investigation. He did, however, repeatedly express frustration with the fact that he may have been implicated in multiple crimes.
On one occasion, Trump allegedly lashed out at Whitaker after Cohen pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about a proposed Trump Tower project in Russia. A week later, when prosecutors implicated the president in crimes relating to hush money payments to Daniels and McDougal, Trump put more pressure on Whitaker, asking why the prosecutors are not being “controlled” better.
These discussions between Trump and Matthew Whitaker, CNN‘s sources claim, “underscore the extent to which the President firmly believes the attorney general of the United States should serve as his personal protector,” and “offer a glimpse into the unsettling dynamic of a sitting president talking to his attorney general about investigations he’s potentially implicated in.”
According to another source, Trump and Matthew Whitaker have a “great” relationship.
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) December 22, 2018
Trump — who frequently refers to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian election interference and possible coordination with the Trump campaign as a “witch hunt” — appointed Matthew Whitaker as acting attorney general following the firing of former loyalist Jeff Sessions. Trump’s decision to appoint Whitaker came under intense scrutiny, since Whitaker is a known critic of Robert Mueller’s probe.
As reported by the Hill, Trump claimed in a recent interview that he was unaware of Whitaker’s Mueller criticism. Whitaker, the publication notes, publicly suggested on multiple occasions that the administration limits the scope of Mueller’s investigation, insisting that Trump did not collude with Russia.
In 2016, according to the Washington Post, Whitaker floated the idea of reopening the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server. Some interpreted this as a sign that Trump would be using his acting attorney general to “go after political rivals.”