Former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara, who was fired by the president in 2017, revealed on Tuesday that he considered secretly recording a conversation with Donald Trump.
In an interview with MSNBC‘s Ari Melber, Bharara said he didn’t trust the president and, when Trump broke protocol and sought to speak with him on the phone, the former U.S. attorney thought of taping the discussion to protect himself.
“I wanted to make sure, because I had a certain amount of mistrust. It was an odd phone call to be making, it would be my word against him if he decides to say something inappropriate,” he said.
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) March 19, 2019
In that moment we actually considered — and it sounds not as crazy as it did back then becuase now we know about Michael Cohen recording the president and Omarosa recording the president. We considered … taping the president in that phone call … because I wanted to make sure because I had a certain amount of mistrust — it was an odd phone call to be making. It would be my word against his, if he decides to say something inappropriate. … That’s why this whole debate about whether Rod Rosenstein was joking when he said I’ll wire up against the president or not sort of rung in my ear a little bit. I tend to believe that he was not joking. Because there’s been a certain kind of conduct that happens. And when you’re used to seeing someone tell untruths about what happens in a conversation and you care about your own integrity, I didn’t want anybody to say you had some side conversation with the president of the United States. So, we didn’t do that ultimately. We thought that was a bridge too far. We talked about it.
The Southern District of New York is becoming Trump’s worst nightmare
While Preet Bharara never returned the president’s call, he is “still at a loss about why Trump called him,” according to The Guardian.
Of course, given what we now know about what’s happening in the Southern District of New York, it’s no surprise that Trump wanted to bring Bharara under his wing.
As PoliticusUSA’s Jason Easley noted earlier on Tuesday, both Trump and Donald Trump Jr. are now under criminal investigation in New York.
“The question of whether or not the SDNY will try to indict Trump while he is in office is back on the table,” Easley wrote. “There is nothing stopping prosecutors from indicting Donald Trump Jr.”
Investigators in New York continue to investigate potentially criminal behavior related to Trump‘s businesses, his campaign, his foundation and his inaugural committee.
Ultimately, the more we learn about the ongoing investigations, the less surprising it is that Trump was trying to put the former SDNY attorney on a leash.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.