NYT: Trump asked Whitaker if he could appoint a prosecutor to investigate Cohen



The Times newspaper quoted several US officials who had direct knowledge of the call that would have occurred at the end of last year.

Trump asked Whitaker to head the Department of Justice in November after firing Attorney General Jeff Sessions, whom he regularly criticized for being challenged from the investigation over Russia.

Trump also criticized Whitaker, according to Times, who said it was "not clear" what Whitaker had done after the call. The Times said there was no evidence that Whitaker had taken steps to intervene in the investigation that Trump had requested, although the report says he said he Ministry of Justice staff that prosecutors needed "adult supervision".

CNN reported in December that Trump had attacked Whitaker on at least two occasions, angered by federal prosecutors who had raised Trump in crimes for which his former lawyer, Michael Cohen, had pleaded guilty. The first instance occurred after Cohen pleaded guilty to lying to Congress on a draft Trump tower project in Moscow, and the second after prosecutors implicated Trump in a scheme to silence women. .
Trump later denied CNN's report in a tweet claiming he had "great respect" for Whitaker.
Attorney General William Barr was confirmed last week to take over the department permanently.

Kerri Kupec, Justice Department spokesman Whitaker, told the Judiciary Committee of the House earlier this month: "The White House has not at any time asked for or given any promises or promises. commitments regarding the investigation of the special advocate or any other investigation ". Mr. Whitaker stands by his testimony, "she said, when members of the Judiciary Committee of the House insisted directly on any conversation with the President regarding the Southern District Inquiry. from New York, Whitaker refused to answer.

Trump Tuesday denied a question from a reporter asking him if he had questioned Whitaker about a case of recusation in the case.

"No, I do not know who gave you that," Trump said.

Trump praised Whitaker as a "very, very straight shooter" and said he had "a lot of respect" for him. "

The President also praised Whitaker's performance at the House Judiciary Committee hearing held earlier this month, calling it "outstanding."

"He should receive a lot of thanks from our nation," said Trump.

The Trump investigation called Whitaker is being conducted by the US Attorney's Office in the Southern District of New York, a Manhattan-based team that sued Cohen. After a confrontation at the beginning of his tenure at the White House, Trump fired the director of this office.
Preet Bharara, the former US attorney who is now a CNN contributor, later stated that he thought that while he had stayed at work, Trump would have asked him to "do something about it." ;inappropriate".
Trump's then Attorney General's sessions then appointed Geoffrey Berman, a former legal partner of Trump's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, to head this high-level office. CNN reported after the federal raid on Cohen last year that Berman had been recused from the investigation.

CNN's Jessica Schneider, Betsy Klein, Laura Jarrett and Pamela Brown contributed to this report.


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