President Donald Trump came out swinging at a familiar target Friday night, when he expressed optimism that he would be able to soon discard a “lingering stench” in the Justice Department and FBI. Although most of the people who opposed his administration in the department have left, there are still a few bad apples left, Trump said at a rally in Springfield, Missouri.
“Just look at what is now being exposed at the Department of Justice and the FBI … I want to tell you, we have great people in the Department of Justice, we have great people. These are people, I really believe, you take a poll, I got to be at 95 percent,” Trump said. “But you had some real bad ones. You’ve see what’s happened at the FBI—they’re all gone, they’re all gone, they’re all gone. But there’s a lingering stench and we’re going to get rid of that too.”
Trump’s comments came mere hours after the New York Times reported — and other outlets later confirmed — that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein had suggested the idea of secretly recording conversations with President Donald Trump. Rosenstein also reportedly discussed the possibility of invoking the 25th amendment to remove Trump from office. Rosenstein has issued two statements denying the allegations. “I never pursued or authorized recording the President and any suggestion that I have ever advocated for the removal of the President is absolutely false,” Rosenstein said.
Trump was in Missouri Friday night to campaign for Josh Hawley, the state’s attorney general who is challenging Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill. As has now become standard, Trump took the opportunity to praise himself rather than the candidate he was there to boost and he told supporters that the midterm elecitons were nothing but a referendum on his administration. “Get out in 2018, because you’re voting for me in 2018,” Trump said. He also characterized Democrats as extremists. “They aren’t just extreme,” he said of Democrats. “They are frankly dangerous, and they are crazy.” Trump won the state by 19 points in the 2016 presidential election.