February 23, 2021 – Rod Rosenstein concedes to having a discussion about secretly recording Trump

In Email Timeline Post-Election 2016, Email/Dossier Investigations, Featured Timeline Entries by Katie Weddington

Rod Rosenstein (Credit: Evan Vucci/The Associated Press)

“Former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is finally opening up about his discussion with a top FBI official concerning the investigation into former President Donald Trump’s potential ties to Russia.

In his first TV interview since leaving the Trump administration in May 2019, Rosenstein told FOX 5 that there was talk of recording the 45th president for the inquiry but denied that he ever intended to wear a “wire” during the turbulent days that followed Trump firing FBI Director James Comey in 2017 before the appointment of Robert Mueller as special counsel.

“I had a conversation with Andrew McCabe about an investigation that he was conducting involving the president. And there was a discussion about whether or not the president would be recorded in the course of that investigation. I never intended to wear a wire, and I think that if Mr. McCabe asked me to wear a wire, we would’ve had to reconsider the whole thing. Because you can’t run an investigation and serve as a witness,” Rosenstein said in an episode of the Siege on Democracy podcast published last month.

McCabe, Comey’s deputy who became acting FBI director for a couple months after the firing, made headlines in February 2019, when he corroborated reporting that claimed Rosenstein offered to wear a recording device while talking to other officials to tape Trump secretly.

That report, published by the New York Times in September 2018, also asserted that Rosenstein discussed Cabinet members to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove the president for being unfit. Rosenstein was asked during the interview whether he did indeed think Trump was unfit for office.

“Well, it depends on what you mean by the word ‘fit,'” Rosenstein said. “There was a lot of talk about whether the president should have been removed under the 25th Amendment. I don’t believe that. I mean, I think the president was capable of doing the job. Doesn’t mean I agree with the way he did it.”

(…) Rosenstein also disputed the report in testimony before Congress.

“I did not suggest or hint at secretly recording Mr. Trump,” Rosenstein told the Senate Judiciary Committee. “I have never in any way suggested the president should be removed from office under the 25th Amendment,” he added.

Multiple reports had a source who said Rosenstein was merely being sarcastic in making the remark about secretly recording the president, but McCabe insisted that Rosenstein was “absolutely serious.” (Read more: Washington Examiner, 3/03/2021)  (Archive)