Donald Trump's last acting attorney general told U.S. senators the former president applied "persistent" pressure on the Department of Justice to discredit the results of the 2020 election.
Jeffrey Rosen told the Senate Judiciary Committee that he "persuaded the president not to pursue a different path" during a January meeting where Trump considered ousting the acting attorney general and replacing him with colleague Jeffrey Clark, who Rosen said had showed an "inexplicable" willingness to push false claims about the election, reported the Washington Post.
"The president was persistent with his inquiries, and I would have strongly preferred that he had chosen a different focus in the last month of his presidency," Rosen said in his opening statement, according to a person familiar with the testimony. "But as to the actual issues put to the Justice Department, DOJ consistently acted with integrity and the rule of law held fast."
Rosen said he pushed back against the former president's pressure, and Trump eventually backed down.
"[Trump's claims were] misguided, and I disagreed with things that President Trump suggested the Justice Department do with regard to the election. So we did not do them," Rosen said. "[When Trump was told he was] misinformed or wrong, or that we would not take various actions to discredit the election's validity, he acquiesced to the department's position."