Trump tried to convince GOP senators to turn on Sessions: report

Trump tried to convince GOP senators to turn on Sessions: report

President TrumpDonald John TrumpRepublicans consider skipping witnesses in Trump impeachment trial Bombshell Afghanistan report bolsters calls for end to 'forever wars' Lawmakers dismiss Chinese retaliatory threat to US tech MORE has personally been lobbying Republican senators to flip on Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsLisa Page sues DOJ, FBI over alleged privacy violations Sessions leads GOP Senate primary field in Alabama, internal poll shows Trump rebukes FBI chief Wray over inspector general's Russia inquiry MORE, Politico reported Wednesday.

Politico reported that Trump, angry with his attorney general, talked about firing Sessions last week during a phone call with Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamRepublicans consider skipping witnesses in Trump impeachment trial Bombshell Afghanistan report bolsters calls for end to 'forever wars' Hillicon Valley: Apple, Facebook defend encryption during Senate grilling | Tech legal shield makes it into trade deal | Impeachment controversy over phone records heats up | TikTok chief cancels Capitol Hill meetings MORE (R-S.C.). Graham last week said that Trump is “very likely” to fire Sessions and that the president was entitled to an attorney general “he has faith in.”

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Trump, according to the outlet, also has “complained loudly” to several other Republican senators about Sessions, GOP staff told Politico. 

The outlet reported that Graham and Judiciary Chairman Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyLighthizer starts GOP charm offensive on Trump trade deal Bottom line Graham: FBI investigation in 2016 turned into a 'criminal conspiracy' MORE (R-Iowa) have been frustrated with Sessions’s opposition to a criminal justice reform bill they have been pushing.

Spokespeople for Graham and the White House declined to comment to Politico, and Trump's attorney, Rudy Giuliani, did not return Politico's call seeking comment on the report.

Graham told reporters last week that it will soon “be time to have a new face and a fresh voice at the Department of Justice.” “Clearly, Attorney General Sessions doesn’t have the confidence of the president,” he said.

Separately, Grassley told Bloomberg that he has time now for hearings for a new attorney general that he didn't have previously.

Sen. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerRNC says ex-Trump ambassador nominee's efforts 'to link future contributions to an official action' were 'inappropriate' Lindsey Graham basks in the impeachment spotlight The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Nareit — White House cheers Republicans for storming impeachment hearing MORE (R-Tenn.) also predicted last week that Trump would fire Sessions after the midterms.

“It’s apparent that after the midterms he [Trump] will make a change and choose someone to do what he wants done,” Corker said. “… It just feels to me that after the midterms the president will make the change.”

Trump earlier this month privately revived the idea of firing Sessions, The Washington Post reported Tuesday.

According to Politico, Trump's latest drive to fire Sessions was prompted by the guilty plea last week of his former longtime attorney Michael Cohen and the conviction of his former campaign manager Paul ManafortPaul John ManafortDOJ backs ex-Trump campaign aide Richard Gates's probation request Former FBI general counsel wants apology from Trump The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by AdvaMed - Democrats to release articles of impeachment today MORE. Both Cohen's plea and Manafort's conviction are tied, in part, to special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerTrump says he'll release financial records before election, knocks Dems' efforts House impeachment hearings: The witch hunt continues Speier says impeachment inquiry shows 'very strong case of bribery' by Trump MORE's Russia investigation — for which Trump has blamed Sessions.

Last week during an interview with “Fox & Friends,” he said Sessions “never took control of the Justice Department” and criticized the attorney general for recusing himself from Mueller's Russia probe.

Sessions issued a rare rebuke of Trump over those comments, saying the Department of Justice “will not be improperly influenced by political considerations.”

Trump has lashed out at Sessions publicly on numerous occasions.