Posing as New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez, comedian John Melendez said he contacted President Donald Trump on Wednesday night while he was on the presidential plane.
Melendez-as-Menendez and Trump, calling from Air Force One, discussed the president's widely reviled policy of separating immigrant children from their parents at the US border and about his opportunity to select a new Supreme Court to replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy.
Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner arranged for the comedian to receive a call back after the White House was notified that the senator wanted to speak to the president. The senator's chief of staff said Menendez never requested a call with the president and the message was passed on internally at the White House that the call was not to happen. That's according to a person familiar with the call who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss it.
The White House declined to discuss the incident.
Melendez said he then called back again, claiming to be the senator's assistant, using what he described as a bad British accent.
President Trump meets with several Supreme Court contenders
If that happens, Trump will have led one of the most consequential conservative presidencies in modern American history. Thapar, 49, is among the 25 shortlisted judges Trump could nominate to replace Kennedy.
Officially, the White House hasn't acknowledged the call.
The Secret Service reportedly is questioning Melendez - who has hired Michael Avenatti as his lawyer.
As played on Melendez's Stuttering John Podcast, the conversation with Trump was relatively benign, with the president greeting the senator as "Bob" and offering "congratulations on everything". "I don't know that "I" just got out of a fraud case". He later said that he was being represented by attorney Michael Avenatti, who skyrocketed to fame earlier this year by representing Stormy Daniels, a porn actress who alleges an affair with Trump.
"Instead of wasting time on this, Mr. Trump should focus on the numerous other things that are of a greater priority", said Avenatti.
A prank caller talking to the leader of the world's most powerful country aboard Air Force One? Speaking to Inside Edition last week, Melendez also offered an apology to the president for the prank.