President Donald Trump called Prosecutor General Jeff Sessions “insane” last May, among other insults, and asked for his resignation, the New York Times reported today.
The incident, which is reported in detail today, makes clear the tensions between Trump and Sessions after he decided to disengage from polls for alleged Russian connections with members of Trump’s election campaign.
According to the newspaper, the events were recorded last May 17 in the presidential office during a meeting that included Trump, Sessions and US Vice President Mike Pence, among others, according to various sources consulted by the newspaper.
It was there that one of the participants in the meeting informed Trump that the Justice Department had decided to appoint a special prosecutor, Robert Mueller, to take the case of alleged Russian connections.
That decision was heavily criticized by Trump, who blamed Sessions for getting rid of the case. The designation of a special prosecutor prevented the White House from maintaining control over the investigations, the newspaper recalls.
Almost immediately after Trump met at that meeting that Mueller was to lead the investigation, the president addressed repeated insults to Sessions, accusing him of being responsible for the situation.
He called him “idiot,” told him that his election as Attorney General was the worst decision he had ever made, and asked for his resignation.
According to the story, Sessions announced that he would resign and left the Oval Office, greatly humiliated by the treatment received.
Publicly, Trump has already stated that he would not have appointed Sessions as the attorney general if he had known that he would disassociate himself from the case of Russian connections, and called that decision “very unfair” with him and as a sign of “disloyalty” towards him .
Although in the past there have been other versions of past intentions of Sessions to resign following this clash with Trump, it is the first time they know details of the incident that sparked the deterioration of the relationship between the two.
According to the newspaper, several Trump advisers, including Vice President Pence, convinced the president that the departure of Sessions would create more chaos in his government, and also gain political enemies in the ranks Republican.
Finally, Trump decided to reject the resignation of Sessions, and returned the letter of resignation that had sent to him, with a presidential answer manuscript not revealed.