Attorney General Jeff Sessions offered his resignation to President Trump amid Trump’s rising frustration with the series of events that culminated in the appointment of a special counsel to investigate his campaign’s contacts with Russian officials, Politico reports. Trump refused Sessions’ offer, which came just before Trump embarked on his first international trip in late May. A source said Sessions offered to resign out of a sense of obligation because he was aware of how angered Trump was about his decision to recuse from the Russia investigations in March. With fired FBI Director James Comey’s testimony tomorrow to the Senate Intelligence Committee set to once again put the spotlight on the Russia investigation, the White House and Trump have declined to give Sessions a vote of confidence.
The president traces a direct line between Sessions’ decision to recuse himself from any Russia investigation to where he stands now: With former FBI director Robert Mueller appointed as a special counsel and with intense public focus on the Russia investigation. A fractured relationship between Trump and Sessions would be significant and could amount to Trump abandoning one of his most loyal supporters. Sessions was for many months the only U.S. senator to back Trump’s campaign. Trump traces the appointment of special counsel Robert Mueller to lead the investigation into Russian election interference back to Sessions’ decision to recuse himself.