Don McGahn, White House Counsel to former President Donald Trump, sat before the House Judiciary Committee last week and said that Trump had directed him to convey a message to Rod Rosenstein urging the firing of former Special Counsel Robert Mueller, according to transcripts released Wednesday. Comparing Trump to Richard Nixon, McGahn told the panel, “If the Acting Attorney General received what he thought was a direction from the counsel to the President to remove a special counsel, he would either have to remove the special counsel or resign. We are still talking about the ‘Saturday Night Massacre’ decades and decades later.” McGahn also appeared to admit that he himself was the source of a leak to The Washington Post about Trump’s order. When asked if Trump had demanded McGahn “do crazy s--t,” McGahn said he thought that was a “fair” characterization of the president’s request.
In one exchange, McGahn admitted to lying to Trump so as to end an uncomfortable phone call.
Q: “Do you recall saying that to the President?… ‘McGahn said he told the President that he would see what he could do.’”
McGahn: “I did say that, yeah. Yeah.”
Q: “Did you intend to see what you could do?”
Q: Then why did you say that to the President?
McGahn: “I was trying to get off the phone.”