Protests to protect Robert Mueller planned nationwide after Jeff Sessions firing

Protests to protect Robert Mueller planned nationwide after Jeff Sessions firing

Trump installed Matt Whitaker, chief of staff at the Justice Department, as acting attorney general and put him in charge of the Russian Federation probe led by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, according to a USA official.

Trump announced that former Sessions chief of staff Matt Whitaker would serve as acting attorney general.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has been overseeing the Mueller investigation since Sessions recused himself from the investigation previous year due of his involvement in Trump's campaign. The move superseded the regular order of succession which would have placed Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein the Acting AG role.

In a letter https://bit.ly/2DaU1nl saying the move placed the country "in the throes of a constitutional crisis", House Judiciary Committee Democrats demanded action from the panel's Republican chairman, Bob Goodlatte, and called for bipartisan legislation to protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller from any effort to stymie the probe. One of those offices, in NY, is leading an investigation involving the president's former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, and hush money payments Cohen says he made to two women who say they had sex with Trump.

The Justice Department has declined to answer whether ethics officials have been asked to review if Whitaker should recuse himself from the Mueller probe.

The Mueller investigation has so far produced 32 criminal charges and four guilty pleas from Trump associates.

The White House is bracing for the probe of Donald Trump's presidential campaign to fire up again.

He managed a Senate campaign for Sam Clovis in Iowa, who later was nominated to join the Trump administration, ran Iowa for Trump, and was interviewed by Mueller's investigators.




That drew criticism from Democrats in Congress because Whitaker, who would now take over responsibility for overseeing Mueller and his investigation, has been critical of the Mueller probe, saying it should be scaled back.

"Committees will also be investigating Attorney General Sessions' departure. Cox clashed with the White House over Nixon's refusal to release Oval Office recordings, some of which implicated the president in the (Watergate hotel) break-in".

Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal of CT also criticized Whitaker's appointment.

Trump's relentless attacks on Sessions came even though the Alabama Republican was the first US senator to endorse Trump and despite the fact his crime-fighting agenda and priorities, particularly his hawkish immigration enforcement policies, largely mirrored the president's.

Trump repeatedly lamented that he would have never selected Sessions if he had known the attorney general would recuse himself. Sessions reportedly resigned at the request of the president.

Her words were echoed by Democratic party Senate leader Chuck Schumer, who added: "Clearly, the president has something to hide."

But Paul Rosenzweig, a former senior counsel to independent counsel Kenneth Starr, said he thought such a lawsuit would be unlikely to succeed because the US Supreme Court has said the president has wide latitude to fire executive branch officials. But a new special counsel was appointed soon after, and the firing of Cox was found by a court to be illegal on November 14, 1973.

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