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Trump: George Conway is ‘just trying to get publicity for himself’

Trump: George Conway is ‘just trying to get publicity for himself’
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President TrumpDonald John TrumpDeath toll in Northern California wildfire rises to 48: authorities Graham backs bill to protect Mueller Denham loses GOP seat in California MORE on Friday criticized George Conway, the husband of White House counselor Kellyanne ConwayKellyanne Elizabeth ConwayTrump’s new strategy: Chummer-in-Chief Kellyanne Conway responds to idea of Clinton 2020 campaign House Dems preview plans to flex oversight muscles MORE, for an op-ed he co-wrote slamming the president's appointment of Matt WhitakerMatthew G WhitakerGrassley defends acting AG against calls for recusal Acting AG will meet with DOJ ethics officials to discuss possible recusal Swalwell calls acting AG an 'assassin' hired to 'take out' Mueller probe MORE as acting attorney general.

“You mean Mr. Kellyanne Conway? He's just trying to get publicity for himself," Trump told reporters when asked about the op-ed. "Why don't you do this, why don't you ask Kellyanne that question, all right? She might know him better than me.”

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Conway co-wrote the op-ed with Neal Katyal, who served as acting solicitor general during the Obama administration. The two argued that Whitaker’s appointment to temporarily replace former Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsGraham backs bill to protect Mueller Democrats in murky legal water with Whitaker lawsuits Whitaker’s past business dealings under scrutiny MORE is in violation of the Appointments Clause of the Constitution, which stipulates that principal officers must be confirmed by the Senate.

“President Trump’s installation of Matthew Whitaker as acting attorney general of the United States after forcing the resignation of Jeff Sessions is unconstitutional," they wrote. "It’s illegal. And it means that anything Mr. Whitaker does, or tries to do, in that position is invalid.”

Trump announced Wednesday that Whitaker, who was Sessions’s chief of staff at the Justice Department, would take over as acting attorney general. Sessions submitted his letter of resignation on Wednesday at Trump’s request.

Whitaker’s appointment was immediately met with a firestorm of criticism over past comments he made regarding special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE’s Russia probe, which he now oversees, and about the judiciary at large.

Most recently, Whitaker defended Trump against the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, saying in a 2017 interview that there was “no collusion with the Russians and the Trump campaign.”

“Hollow calls for independent prosecutors are just craven attempts to score cheap political points and serve the public in no measurable way,” he wrote in an op-ed for The Hill last year.

In 2014, Whitaker said, “The courts are supposed to be the inferior branch of our three branches of government.”