Politics

DNC Chair Tom Perez Does Complete 180 On Sessions: Firing Him Is ‘Worse Than Watergate’

Virginia Kruta Associate Editor

Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez claimed that firing Attorney General Jeff Sessions was “worse than Watergate,” saying, “This doesn’t pass the smell test.”

WATCH:

Responding to the news that President Donald Trump had asked for Sessions’ resignation on Wednesday, Perez stated, “Well, there’s a law and there’s a test that apply to what he just did. The law is the Vacancies Reform Act. You can argue that it’s ambiguous whether he could do what he just did. There’s a test that is very unambiguous. It’s called the smell test. This doesn’t pass the smell test, Ali.” (RELATED: Trump Fires Jeff Sessions)

Democratic National Commitee (DNC) Chairman Tom Perez reacts to the results of the U.S. midterm elections as he speaks at a Democratic party election night rally in Washington, U.S. November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Democratic National Commitee (DNC) Chairman Tom Perez reacts to the results of the U.S. midterm elections as he speaks at a Democratic party election night rally in Washington, November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

But Perez continued, arguing that his experience in the Justice Department dictated a different procedure and invoking Nixon.

The common practice, the custom, and it was well-informed, was when an Attorney General left, you had a Senate-confirmed person in the seat. So that you couldn’t have something happen like this. On a certain level, this is worse than Watergate because the Saturday Night Massacre, he kept firing Senate-confirmed people until he found Bork, who was a Senate-confirmed person to do this.

This was a marked departure from Perez’s response to Sessions’ appointment and subsequent confirmation, when he repeatedly called for the former Alabama Senator to resign.

FILE PHOTO: U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions (L) and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein arrive at a summit on crime reduction and public safety in Bethesda, Maryland, U.S., June 20, 2017. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

FILE PHOTO: U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions (L) and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein arrive at a summit on crime reduction and public safety in Bethesda, Maryland, U.S., June 20, 2017. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

 

Perez concluded by suggesting that President Trump may have gone with a temporary replacement in order to stall the appointment of a permanent replacement until he had a greater majority of Republicans in the Senate in January. “And the other thing about the privilege I had of working at the Department of Justice is we had a duty not only to seek justice but to ensure the appearance of justice,” He said. “And this so violates that.”

Follow Virginia on Twitter