GOP senator: Trump wants to fire Sessions for not being a 'hack'

Republican Sen. Ben SasseBenjamin (Ben) Eric SasseOvernight Health Care — Sponsored by America's 340B Hospitals — Push for cosponsors for new 'Medicare for all' bill | Court lets Dems defend ObamaCare | Flu season not as severe as last year, CDC says Senate approves border bill that prevents shutdown The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Kidney Care Partners — Lawmakers scramble as shutdown deadline nears MORE (Neb.) says he has warned President TrumpDonald John TrumpMcCabe says he was fired because he 'opened a case against' Trump McCabe: Trump said 'I don't care, I believe Putin' when confronted with US intel on North Korea McCabe: Trump talked to me about his election victory during 'bizarre' job interview MORE that firing Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsMcCabe says he was fired because he 'opened a case against' Trump The Hill's Morning Report — Presented by the American Academy of HIV Medicine — Trump, Congress prepare for new border wall fight The Memo: Trump and McCabe go to war MORE “would be a very, very, very bad idea.” 

Sasse, speaking on the Senate floor, said that if Trump terminated Sessions, it would be because the attorney general has refused to execute “his job as a political hack.”

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“It’s been a strange couple of hours. Lots and lots of goofy talk about firing the attorney general,” Sasse said.

“I would just like to say in public what I’ve been saying to my colleagues in a message I just communicated to the president of the United States,” he continued.

“It would be a very, very, very bad idea to fire the attorney general because he’s not executing his job as a political hack. That is not the job of the attorney general.”

The GOP senator, a sometimes outspoken critic of Trump’s trade policies, defended Sessions, even while acknowledging that he doesn’t always agree with him.

“Everybody in this body knows that Jeff Sessions has been executing his job in a way faithful to his oath of office, to the Constitution, and trying to defend the rule of law,” Sasse said.

Sasse was one of several GOP lawmakers who defended Sessions on Thursday.

Senate Republican Whip John CornynJohn CornynOn unilateral executive action, Mitch McConnell was right — in 2014 Poll shows competitive matchup if O’Rourke ran for Senate again On The Money: Trump declares emergency at border | Braces for legal fight | Move divides GOP | Trump signs border deal to avoid shutdown | Winners, losers from spending fight | US, China trade talks to resume next week MORE (Texas) told reporters earlier in the day that “those of us who’ve worked with Jeff Sessions for the last 15 years or more know him to be an honorable man, somebody who’s dedicated not only to [the] rule of law but also to the Department of Justice.”