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Trump denies asking Comey to drop probe, decries 'witch hunt'

19 May 2017

Robert Mueller, 72, has got a serious job ahead of him as the newly appointed special counsel (aka prosecutor) that will "oversee the previously-confirmed FBI investigation of Russian government efforts to influence the 2016 presidential election, and related matters".

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein appointed Mueller after a succession of jarring developments that brought questions over Russia's alleged meddling in the election and possible collusion by the Trump campaign to a boil.

But President Trump had a different opinion, taking to Twitter to call the selection of a special counsel "The single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history".

Both The Washington Post and The New York times are quoting him as saying "only" instead of "always", but the end result is still the same, either way.

"I am concerned that Director Mueller will still be subject to the supervision of the Trump administration leadership at the Justice Department", House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., told reporters Thursday. Somebody should warn him that doesn't let him off the hook.

But Trump himself has already said that he was going to fire Comey regardless of any recommendation by the Justice Department.

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White House officials and others insisted on anonymity in order to disclose private conversations and internal deliberations. Even before Trump's provocative tweet, the White House was scrambling to clarify why Comey was sacked .

What are you talking about, dude?

Appearing Wednesday on Special Report with Bret Baier, Charles Krauthammer doesn't believe that Donald Trump can fire his way out of trouble on the Robert Mueller-led Russian Federation probe.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, said, "It's now considered a criminal investigation and Congress's ability to conduct investigations of all things Russian Federation has been severely limited - probably in an appropriate way".

"Mueller's in charge, completely in charge of this investigation", said Democratic Senator Dick Durbin of IL.

Graham said Rosenstein "talked about why he wrote the memo" detailing Comey's lapses as Federal Bureau of Investigation director just before Comey was sacked, but for "all things related to the process of the memo I think we'll - you'll need to talk to Mr. Mueller about that".

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.

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Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who named Mueller to lead the probe, briefed United States senators on Thursday.

Rosenstein briefed senators on Thursday but made no public comments.

Many Democrats earlier had sharply criticized Rosenstein for writing the memo the Trump White House initially used to justify Comey's firing.

The New York Times reported on Thursday that Trump called Comey weeks after he took office on January 20 and asked him when federal authorities were going to say Trump was not under investigation.

"I don't think he will sacrifice time for accommodation". In the cases of Presidents Nixon, Reagan and Clinton, special prosecutors were conducting investigations that took place years into their presidencies. "I now have significantly greater confidence that the investigation will follow the facts wherever they lead".

The No. 2 Senate Republican, John Cornyn of Texas, said he is supportive of investigations in Congress but expressed concern about the "proliferation" of hearings.

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In congressional testimony last week, he notably said that he has seen "no effort to impede our investigation to date". He lost to a Senate primary challenger in 2006 and only retained his seat after he switched his party to independent.

Even Republicans who had said they were opposed to the creation of a new investigator signaled support of the move. Sen. "Whatever the motivation for the investigation, Mueller is sufficiently well-respected that it likely won't be 'just for show.'" Daria explained that Rosenstein made a really good choice in appointing Mueller to special counsel. "I certainly hope there wasn't any but if there is there are going to be very serious consequences", Dent told CNN.