US President Donald Trump has publicly attacked Attorney General Jeff Sessions again, accusing him of taking “a very weak position” on alleged “crimes” by his former presidential rival Hillary Clinton and intelligence leakers.
“Sessions should have never recused himself, and if he was going to recuse himself, he should have told me before he took the job and I would have picked somebody else,” Trump tweeted on Tuesday.
Trump also lashed out at acting FBI director Andrew McCabe, saying it is a problem that he is in charge of the Clinton investigation.
Trump’s latest criticism of the embattled attorney general followed a report in The Washington Post that the president and his advisers have discussed replacing Sessions, a remarkable public break with one of his earliest political supporters.
Session announced in March that he was recusing himself from matters related to the Justice Department’s investigation of alleged Russian interference in the election and any connections to the Trump campaign.
Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak has told his superiors in Moscow that he discussed campaign-related matters with Sessions, contrary to public assertions by the attorney general, according to current and former US officials.
Kislyak conversations with Sessions, who was a senator from Alabama and a foreign policy
adviser to Trump when he was the Republican presidential candidate last year, were intercepted by US spy agencies.
Sessions has repeatedly denied discussing election-related issues with Russian officials. “I never had meetings with Russian operatives or Russian intermediaries about the Trump campaign,” Sessions said in March.
In an interview with The New York Times last week, Trump said he never would have hired Sessions had he known the attorney general would recuse himself from overseeing the Russia investigation that has consumed his presidency.
The US intelligence community has accused Russia of running a series of high-profile cyber attacks to change the outcome of the November 8 presidential election in favor of Trump.
Trump has repeatedly rejected such reports and has expressed support for improving relations with the US’ former Cold War foe.