President Donald Trump has postponed his planned meeting with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein until next week, the White House announced on Thursday.
White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said Trump spoke briefly with Rosenstein on Thursday and the two men agreed to meet next week to avoid interfering with the focus on the Senate Judiciary Committee’s hearings with Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, who has accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her when they were teenagers.
“They do not want to do anything to interfere with the hearing,” Sanders said in a statement.
Trump and Rosenstein were set to meet Thursday in person to discuss Rosenstein’s future in the administration after The New York Times reported last week that Rosenstein suggested secretly recording the President and attempting to remove him from office via the 25th Amendment.
Rosenstein offered his resignation on Friday and believed he would be fired when he went to the White House on Monday to meet with White House chief of staff John Kelly. But he has now spoken to Trump on the phone at least twice and remained in his post.
Trump signaled during a news conference on Wednesday that he might delay his meeting with Rosenstein, saying he might “ask for a little bit of a delay to the meeting, because I don’t want to do anything that gets in the way of this very important Supreme Court pick.”
“I don’t want it competing and hurting the decision, one way or the other,” Trump said.
Trump declined to say whether he had made up his mind on Rosenstein’s future in his administration, but said he “would much prefer keeping Rod Rosenstein.”
“We’ve had a good talk. He said he never said it, he said he doesn’t believe it. He said he has a lot of respect for me, and he was very nice and we’ll see,” Trump said. “We have caught people doing things that are terrible. I would much prefer keeping Rod Rosenstein, much prefer.”