Senate

Franken: 'Constitutional crisis' if Trump uses recess appointment to replace Sessions with someone who'll fire Mueller

Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) warned of a "constitutional crisis" if President Trump fired Attorney General Jeff Sessions and tried to appoint a successor during the August recess who would then fire special counsel Robert Mueller.

During an interview on MSNBC, Franken said he voted against Sessions and "wasn't happy with some of the answers he gave to my questions."

But, he said, the "idea of the president firing him so that he can appoint - do a recess appointment of an attorney general who can then fire Mueller, that's a constitutional crisis."

"That would create a constitutional crisis," Franken said.

Senate Democrats are warning they will block Trump from trying to bypass the confirmation process by firing Sessions and appointing a successor during the August recess.

"Let me state for the record now, before this scheme gains wings, Democrats will never go along with the recess appointment if that situation arises," Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said Tuesday, amid speculation about Sessions's future in the administration.

He added that Democrats "have some tools in our toolbox" to block Trump from a recess appointment.

Trump has targeted Sessions in recent days. In an interview last week, he said he likely would not have chosen Sessions as attorney general if he had known Sessions was going to recuse himself from the Russia investigation.

During a press conference Tuesday, Trump refused to say if he would fire Sessions.

He said he was "disappointed" with his attorney general and said only that "time will tell" what fate awaits him.

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