NY TIMES: Rosenstein Proposed 'Secretly Recording Trump,' Invoking 25th Amendment

Pauline Gross
September 22, 2018

CBS News has has confirmed that while McCabe's interpretation was that this was a serious suggestion, others in the room say it was clearly a joke. "But there is a lingering stench and we're going to get rid of that, too".

Trump made the future of Kavanaugh and the federal judiciary a centerpiece of his rally in Springfield, which was created to support the state's Republican Senate candidate, Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley, in his race against Democratic incumbent Claire McCaskill.

The sources were responding to a New York Times report that Rosenstein, in the tumultuous spring of 2017, had discussed with other Justice and Federal Bureau of Investigation officials the possibility of recruiting members of Trump's Cabinet to declare him unfit for the job and that he offered to wear a recording device during conversations with the president. Rosenstein believed he would be able to convince Attorney General Jeff Sessions and then-Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly to sign on, according to the sources.

Hannity warned Trump on his Fox News program Friday not to fire anyone because it's a "set up".

In this July 13, 2018, file photo, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein speaks during a news conference at the Department of Justice in Washington.

Rosenstein was rankled by the revelation that Comey had kept memos about his interactions with the president; McCabe wanted a more aggressive approach toward the White House, the person said.

McCabe, who resigned as deputy director in January and went on paid leave until he was officially fired in March, features prominently in the Times story but declined to comment to the paper. "You figure that one out", Trump said when asked by reporters in the Oval Office if he was considering firing Rosenstein.

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The extraordinary allegations, depicting a panic-stricken No. 2 official at the Justice Department who has been a target of the President in the past, were first reported by The New York Times.

"Just look at what is now being exposed in the Department of Justice and the FBI", Trump told the Missouri crowd. Sessions recused from that issue soon after he took office, to Trump's dismay, and Rosenstein later appointed Mueller.

None of his proposals appear to have been acted upon, according to the Times, but the report will nearly certainly increase Trump's ire at the deputy attorney general - and potentially put his job in jeopardy.

He said that based on personal interactions with the president, there is no basis for any 25th Amendment action, the constitutional provision allowing for succession when a president is deemed to be incapacitated. He did not address the content of the memos. The Times also reported that Rosenstein suggested he wear a wire to surreptitiously record the president, though a Justice Department spokeswoman said Rosenstein proposed the idea "sarcastically".

"Who are we kidding at this point?" he tweeted, above a link to the Times article.

The story also elicited a quick response from members of Congress. He "needs not to fall into a trap", said Hannity.

Other reports by GizPress

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