Deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein has told White House officials he is willing to resign in the wake of revelations he once suggested secretly recording the president, but it's unclear if the resignation has been accepted, according to people familiar with the matter.
Citing two unnamed sources, the news site said he is stepping down in expectation of being fired by President Donald Trump over reports that he questioned Trump's fitness for office. He denied both allegations.
Trump was not at the White House; he traveled to New York City for the United Nations General Assembly.
Rosenstein challenged the report Friday, saying he feels "there is no basis to invoke the 25th Amendment".
In a radio interview aired on Monday, Mr Trump said he had not decided whether to fire Mr Rosenstein. Rosenstein reportedly told close associates that he would one day be "vindicated" for being ordered to draft the memo justifying Comey's ouster. Rosenstein appointed Mueller and oversees his investigation.
Before named by Trump to serve as the No. 2 to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Rosenstein served as the U.S. Attorney for the District of Maryland. If he's removed it could be the precursor to Trump maneuvering to put an end to the investigation. Trump and his supporters argue the Justice Department has run amok with "bias" and abuse of power, which they say includes inappropriate snooping on Trump's campaign in 2016.
The Times quoted other sources who said Rosenstein was serious, however.
Rosenstein served in the Justice Department for almost three decades.