Yesterday, shortly before Mr Trump's press conference at the White House, Mr Rosenstein briefed the entire USA senate on Capitol Hill, a previously-scheduled engagement. "He learned of the president's decision to fire him and then he wrote his memo with his rationale", Durbin said.
Earlier this week, during the daily press briefing on May 15, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said a special prosecutor wasn't needed to look into the Russian Federation investigation.
While there was no special counsel appointed during the Obama years, Congress was relentless in probing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's handling of the attack on the US mission in Benghazi.
When asked about whether he pushed Comey, the man he fired earlier in the month, to end the Russian Federation investigation, Trump was firm and quick to reply: "No, no". Rosenstein threatened to resign from the Justice Department because of the explanation that White House officials were giving reporters about the firing, said the person close to the White House, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
Sen. Bob Casey, D-Penn., was one of many Democrats who left the meeting disappointed. "That is politics", said Sen. And Repubican Senator Bill Cassidy said Rosenstein stressed that the existence of the investigation itself does not mean that somebody definitively committed a crime. But Graham emphasized "the takeaway I have is that everything he said was that you need to treat this investigation as though it may be a criminal investigation".
The White House initially said Comey's firing was made based on the recommendation by Rosenstein.
Graham said that if he were Mueller, he would "jealously guard the witness pool", making it less likely that Comey will testify before congressional committees about his firing. "O$3 ne of the big losers in this decision is the public", Graham said and added that he anxious lawmakers would have trouble getting responses to subpoenas delivered to potential witnesses or convincing them to testify in a public congressional hearing because they'd be more likely to plead the fifth to avoid incriminating themselves.
"This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!" wrote Mr Trump, ignoring impeachment efforts and blistering verbal attacks on previous presidents and other political leaders.
Sen. Marco Rubio commented on President Trump's statement that the situation is a "witch hunt" as well saying, "He's entitled to his opinion but 'we are a nation of laws'".
Mueller, a former federal prosecutor at the Justice Department, was confirmed as FBI director days before the September 11, 2001, attacks that would ultimately shape his tenure.
"The general consensus is it was a good decision to pick a special counsel", said South Carolina Republican Lindsey Graham, saying most lawmakers have "a lot of confidence in Mr. Mueller", who ran the Federal Bureau of Investigation for 12 years.
Durbin and other Democrats complained, however, that Rosenstein refused to answer many of their questions and did so by citing the seriousness of the investigation. "Consistent with the Committee's position since the beginning of or investigation, I welcome their willingness to cooperate", Burr spokeswoman Rebecca Glover said. After the briefing, California Democrat Kamala Harris was asked if Rosenstein's integrity was compromised by writing the memo after he knew Comey would be fired.
"We're going to keep going with our investigation as is, and cross" that bridge if necessary, he said. Richard Burr, R-N.C., indicated Thursday morning that former National Security Director Michael Flynn had chosen not to comply with a subpoena issued for documents related to the Russian Federation probe. I think it shows division, and it shows that we're not together as a country.
But why Rosenstein's briefing needed to happen in a room designed for classified briefings is still unclear.
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