Deputy AG Rosenstein set for budget hearing Tuesday

14 Juin, 2017, 05:08 | Author: Marc Bacque
  • U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions
was forced to recuse himself from the Trump Russia investigation after failing to disclose two meetings he had with the Russian ambassador to the U.S

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said Tuesday he's seen no basis for firing Robert Mueller, the former FBI director he appointed as special counsel to oversee an investigation into potential coordination between the Trump presidential campaign and Russian Federation.

Rosenstein handed the reigns of the investigation over to Mueller last month not long after Trump abruptly fired FBI director James Comey, cutting short his 10-year term.

Senate Judiciary Committee ranking member Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) excoriated Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein Tuesday morning for, well, not being Jeff Sessions.

Rosenstein continued to defend the investigation and the Department of Justice's oversight, saying "I can assure you we're going to do the right thing and defend the integrity of the investigation". "I am confident he will have sufficient independence".

WASHINGTON (AP) - Attorney General Jeff Sessions heatedly denied on Tuesday having an undisclosed meeting with Russia's ambassador to the US or conversations with any Russian officials about the USA election that sent Donald Trump to the White House.

Asked Monday if the White House thought Sessions should invoke executive privilege to avoid answering questions about his conversations with Trump, presidential spokesman Sean Spicer replied, "It depends on the scope of the questions".

In addition to tending to intensify the oversight from Congress, a decision to fire Mueller would nearly certainly lead to the resignation of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and probably also the resignations of the few other subcabinet nominees Trump has gotten confirmed at the Department of Justice. So, that's what I would do. "So I would consider it and if there was good cause I would do it and if there were not good cause, it wouldn't matter what anybody said".

Mr Sessions was revealed to have met the Russian ambassador twice a year ago, meetings that he did not indicate during the Senate confirmation hearing approving his appointment.

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Democratic senators on the committee attempted to clarify the boundaries of Sessions' recusal, something they say is unclear.

"I think it is a consideration the President has had, because (Robert) Mueller is illegitimate as special counsel", Ruddy told CNN's Chris Cuomo on "New Day" Tuesday.

Both Fleischer and Gingrich had previously vouched for the character and integrity of Mueller, who was appointed Federal Bureau of Investigation director by Bush and whose term was extended an extra two years by Democratic President Barack Obama. That is why Gingrich claims Mueller is treating Trump unfairly, and how Trump may justify firing him. Mueller was appointed to investigate whether Trump or his associates had links to Russian hackers, and Trump lacks the direct authority to dismiss him.

The White House was quick to react to the reports.

Jack Goldsmith, a Harvard Law professor who headed the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel during the George W. Bush administration, offered a careful assessment of the consequences of a Mueller firing early Tuesday on the Lawfare blog.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein says that a history of political giving is not a disqualifier for those who work for the Department of Justice's special counsel investigating Russian interference in US elections. Trump called because "I have been very clear" about Mueller and the lawyers he's hired amounting to a "rigged game", Gingrich said.

The public testimony Tuesday before the Senate intelligence committee should yield Sessions' most extensive comments to date on questions that have dogged his entire tenure as attorney general and that led him three months ago to step aside from the Russian Federation probe.

"I am thrilled to have a chance to help you to live up to your campaign promises", said Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. Instead, Gohmert believes Comey's testimony last week before the Senate Intelligence Committee further proves collusion.

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