One Senator warned, “BEWARE of anything coming out of the New York Times.”
“Proceed with caution” — that’s the warning many conservatives are heeding after they seemingly got a massive boon on Friday afternoon. That’s when New York Times reporters Adam Goldman and Michael Schmidt released an exclusive story alleging that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein — whom President Donald Trump has privately mused about firing for some time — had spoken with other Justice Department officials about secretly recording President Trump and invoking the 25th Amendment to remove him from office. The conversation allegedly happened in the immediate wake of FBI Director James Comey’s firing.
Rosenstein denied the allegations, calling them “inaccurate and factually incorrect,” while reporters from the Washington Post allege, based on reporting from other sources who were in the room, that Rosenstein was being sarcastic.
To be sure, many on the right — particularly those close to the President and his most ardent backers, like Fox News host Laura Ingraham (who has since deleted her tweet) — jumped to an expected conclusion: It’s time to fire Rod Rosenstein, with some arguing that his denials weren’t “believable.”
Rod Rosenstein must be fired today. @realDonaldTrump
— Laura Ingraham (@IngrahamAngle) September 21, 2018
Rod Rosenstein needs to go. Immediately.
— Ryan Fournier (@RyanAFournier) September 21, 2018
But visible in both the replies to these tweets, and the tweets and statements of dozens of other conservatives, including many of Trump’s earliest supporters, was a note of caution. Though Rosenstein’s alleged offenses would seem to make the perfect case that nefarious elements with the government — the so-called “deep state” — have