President Donald Trump has talked about the possibility of installing a new Attorney General through a recess appointment if Jeff Sessions leaves the job, the Washington Post reports.
But Trump also has been warned not to move to push Sessions out because of the political and legal fallout, the Post reports.
Trump, still angry Sessions recused himself from the Russia investigation, has been talking privately about how he might replace the attorney general and possibly sidestep Senate oversight, the Post reported, citing four unnamed sources. A senior White House official told the Post no action is imminent.
The White House released a one-sentence denial from Trump: “More fake news from the Amazon Washington Post”, a reference to Post owner Jeff Bezos, the founder and chief executive of Amazon.
According to the Post, Trump’s discussions have been interpreted differently by different advisers: Some believe Trump is determined to ultimately remove Sessions – preferably by his resignation rather than by firing him – and is seriously considering a recess appointment.
Others have concluded that Trump is merely venting, one described it as “an emotional exercise”, while another called it “just a rough-up job”, saying that there’s no plan to replace Sessions.
The president has the power to make a recess appointment when the Senate adjourns for a long break of more than a week, allowing the appointee to avoid Senate confirmation and serve through the end of next year. But Democrats have already signaled they’ll use stalling tactics to prevent Trump from installing a new Attorney General.