Administration

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

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President Trump on Friday criticized George Conway, the husband of White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, for an op-ed he co-wrote slamming the president’s appointment of Matt Whitaker 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.”

{mosads}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 Sessions 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 Mueller’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.”

Tags Donald Trump Jeff Sessions Kellyanne Conway Matt Whitaker Robert Mueller

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