President Donald Trump believes Attorney General Jeff Sessions will likely leave his Cabinet at the end of the year, and so far has five potential replacements in mind who could take his place, The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday.

Possible successors include retired federal appeals judge Janice Rogers Brown, transportation department counsel Steven Bradbury, Health and Human Services secretary Alex Azar, deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan, and Bill Barr, who served as attorney general under President George H.W. Bush.

Tensions have flared between Trump and Sessions ever since the attorney general recused himself from all Russia-related matters surrounding the federal investigation of that country's meddling in the 2016 US election.

Trump frequently denounces the special counsel investigation as a politically motivated "witch hunt," and accuses the Justice Department under Sessions of not sufficiently investigating what he believes are indiscretions perpetrated by Democrats.