White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer on Tuesday declined to say whether Donald Trump has confidence in Jeff Sessions, amid reports that the president is still reeling over his attorney general’s recusal from the Russia investigation.
The New York Times on Monday reported Trump has “grown sour” on Sessions, stemming in large part from his decision to step aside from the Russia probe over mounting concerns about conflicts-of interest. Sessions selected Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to head the investigation, which Trump believes ultimately resulted in the appointment of special prosecutor Robert Mueller.
Monday morning, Trump sent out a series of tweets hinting of growing disdain for his attorney general, attacking the Department of Justice for submitting a second version of the president’s travel ban—an executive order Trump himself signed.
“The Justice Dept. should have stayed with the original Travel Ban, not the watered down, politically correct version they submitted to S.C.,” Trump wrote on Monday.
At a press conference Tuesday, Spicer refused to tell CBS’ Major Garrett that the president supports Sessions.
“How would you describe the president’s level of confidence in the attorney general, Jeff Sessions?” Garret asked.
“I have not had a conversation with him about that,” Spicer replied.
“Last time you said that, there was a development,” Garrett pointed out, referring to Spicer’s similar wording about a question related former FBI Director James Comey just hours before the president fired him.
“I’m answering a question, which is: I have not had that discussion with him,” Spicer shot back.
“You can’t say he has confidence in his attorney general?” Garret pressed.
“I said I have not had a discussion with him on the question,” Spicer repeated. “If I haven’t had a discussion with him about a subject, I tend not to speak of it.”
Watch the video below, via CNN:
Sean Spicer can't answer a simple question: Does Trump still has confidence in Attorney General Jeff Sessions? pic.twitter.com/O8b0HKMWvt
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) June 6, 2017