New York Times defends bombshell Rosenstein report

New York Times defends bombshell Rosenstein report
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The New York Times on Saturday defended its bombshell report on Friday that Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod RosensteinGraham requests interviews with DOJ, FBI officials as part of probe into Russia investigation DOJ won't charge former FBI Deputy Director McCabe Rosenstein says he authorized release of Strzok-Page texts MORE discussed secretly recording conversations with President TrumpDonald John TrumpChanges in policies, not personalities, will improve perception of corruption in the US Union leader: Bloomberg can go all the way Pelosi: 'I'm not counting Joe Biden out' MORE last year and proposed the possibility of administration officials invoking the 25th Amendment to remove the president from office.

The Times's deputy managing editor Matt Purdy wrote in a statement Saturday that the newspaper stands by the reporting of its journalists, Mike Schmidt and Adam Goldman, who broke the story. 

Citing unnamed sources, the Times reported on Friday that Rosenstein made the remarks just weeks into his job last year following the sudden firing of FBI Director James ComeyJames Brien ComeyDOJ attorney looking into whether CIA withheld info during start of Russia probe: NYT Graham requests interviews with DOJ, FBI officials as part of probe into Russia investigation Raising the Barr isn't always the best way to combat corruption MORE.

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"Just because you don't like the facts, don't comfort yourself by dismissing the story as fake or credulous reporting," Purdy wrote. "The DOJ claim that Rosenstein was sarcastic when he suggested he wear a wire on Trump is not supported by our reporting or others."

"It is the responsibility of the media to report the facts, however comforting or discomforting," Purdy continued.

Purdy's statement came less than a day after the Justice Department circulated a statement from an official who claimed to have been in the room with Rosenstein when he made the alleged remarks. The official, however, described the remarks as sarcastic in nature.

The Times and other news outlets have fought back frequently against harsh criticism from the president and his administration, who have called what they perceive as negative reporting "fake news."

Rosenstein on Friday fiercely denied the Times's reporting in two separate statements, refusing to address the specifics but stating that he saw no reason to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from office.

The amendment lays out a process by which a majority of Cabinet members can vote to remove a president deemed unfit to serve.

“The New York Times’s story is inaccurate and factually incorrect,” He said in a statement issued by the Justice Department. “I will not further comment on a story based on anonymous sources who are obviously biased against the department and are advancing their own personal agenda."

"But let me be clear about this: Based on my personal dealings with the president, there is no basis to invoke the 25th Amendment,” the deputy attorney general added.