Flake says Senate does not want Trump to fire Sessions

Flake says Senate does not want Trump to fire Sessions
© Greg Nash

Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeGOP opens door to holding Kavanaugh committee vote this week Police arrest 128 protesting Kavanaugh on Capitol Hill GOP launches counteroffensive on Kavanaugh MORE (R-Ariz.) said on Sunday that the Senate, as a body, does not want President TrumpDonald John TrumpHouse Republican threatens to push for Rosenstein impeachment unless he testifies Judge suggests Trump’s tweet about Stormy Daniels was ‘hyperbole’ not defamation Rosenstein faces Trump showdown MORE to fire Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsRosenstein faces Trump showdown Solicitor general could take over Mueller probe if Rosenstein exits 13 states accepted Sessions invitation to meeting on social media bias: report MORE.

“There may be a few isolated voices saying that the president ought to fire him now, I can tell you as a body we’re saying, ‘Please don’t,’ ” he told Chuck Todd on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

“He serves at the pleasure of the president, we all know that, but I think it would be a big mistake for the president to fire him now.”

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The comments came after Todd played two clips of Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamGOP opens door to holding Kavanaugh committee vote this week Press: Judge Kavanaugh must withdraw Kavanaugh: 'I will not be intimidated into withdrawing' MORE (R-S.C.) giving interviews. In the first, from last year, Graham said there will be “holy hell to pay” if Sessions is fired. But in a second interview, he said last week that “the president is entitled to an attorney general he has faith in.”

Todd asked what kind of repercussions there should be if Trump fires Sessions.

Flake said the concern is Sessions would be the first domino to fall “then what happens with Rod RosensteinRod Jay RosensteinHouse Republican threatens to push for Rosenstein impeachment unless he testifies Rosenstein faces Trump showdown Solicitor general could take over Mueller probe if Rosenstein exits MORE, what happens with Bob Mueller," he said, referring to the deputy attorney general and the special counsel.

"I think firing Jeff Sessions would concern us all that would be the first domino.”

But Flake, who is retiring from the Senate and is often critical of Trump, said he thinks the president will hold off.

“He’s made these kind of noises before and then pulled back,” he said.

In an interview with Fox News last week, Trump reignited his long-running attack of Sessions, claiming he "never took control of the Justice Department.” The comments spurred speculation that Sessions time in office could be coming to an end.