Trey Gowdy: I would not stay if I were Sessions

Rep. Trey Gowdy understands President Trump’s frustration with Jeff Sessions’ decision to recuse himself from the Russia investigation, but defended the Attorney General’s action as “appropriate.”

“The recusal itself was appropriate,” Gowdy told Fox News’ Bret Baier on “Special Report” Tuesday, but added that he understood Trump’s frustration in what led Sessions to make that decision.

Trump has grown increasingly critical of Sessions, saying he would not have hired him if he knew he would recuse himself. Most recently, the president tweeted about the “beleaguered A.G.” on Monday.

“I don’t think personnel decisions are usually well resolved over Twitter,” Gowdy told Baier, adding that he was saddened on “a number of levels” by the strained relationship between the president and the attorney general.

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“I think the President’s frustration was not the recusal. I hope it wasn’t, because I don’t think Attorney General Sessions had a choice but to recuse himself,” Gowdy said. “If the president could be frustrated, he should be frustrated by what led up to the recusal, which was Sen. Sessions had a faulty memory.”

The House Oversight Chairman explained that it wasn’t necessarily the recusal, which of itself was “appropriate.”

“His failure to recall meetings with the Russian ambassador is what led him to that point,” he said. “And if the President’s frustrated about that, I understand his frustration, but you work all that out during the interview process, not after you get the job.”

Baier asked Gowdy how he would react if in the same position as Sessions.

“I would not stay if my employer had lost confidence in me,” the South Carolina Republican admitted, adding that the “public squabbling” is “heartbreaking” for him.

“On the other hand, Attorney General Sessions may believe that he is doing the job in the way that he is supposed to,” he added. “He doesn’t work for the President, he works for a blindfolded woman holding a set of scales. So he’s got to make that call.”

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