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U.S. senators probe Trump official on special counsel, Federal Bureau of Investigation firing

19 May 2017

"According to Democratic Senator Dick Durbin, "[Rosenstein] said over and over again that Mueller is going to draw the scope of this investigation, that Mueller is going to have the resources, that Mueller is not going to be interfered with by him or the Department of Justice".

Mr. Mueller has the respect of senior members of both political parties and has shown the self-discipline to stick to the main subject and avoid useless controversies. A key adviser to Trump during the presidential campaign, Flynn was dismissed not long after the inauguration when it became known that he had had Russian contacts and had misled the Trump team about them.

Speaking at a news conference in Washington, he denied any collusion with Russian Federation during his election campaign a year ago.

Details may come out in court in the event of an indictment, but that may be less likely if the probe closes without criminal charges.

"Director Comey was very unpopular with most people", he said. However, he complained in an early morning tweet on Thursday that he was being unfairly singled out for special counsel scrutiny.

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"With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special counsel appointed!" As a new special counsel, he will have the same powers as any U.S. Attorney, and will report to Mr. Rosenstein, so at least in theory he will not be unsupervised. But Mr. Mueller can be trusted to take the investigation only where the facts lead and apply the law as required. "Mr. Mueller will be independent".

Rosenstein may have been asked about his decision to open an independent investigation, as well as the circumstances surrounding the memo he wrote about Comey. The operative statute is Section 1503 of Title 18, United States Code. His comments on Twitter and in public often contradict the statements coming from other administration officials who were assigned the unenviable task of refuting charges of collusion and obstruction, almost all of them raised by anonymous sources in press accounts.

The president's tweets and comments to the TV anchors drew little reaction from fellow Republicans, who instead joined Democrats in heaping praise on Mueller, a longtime respected lawman who served under George W. Bush and Barack Obama, preceding Comey as head of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

"I don't think it's in anybody's interested to delay or impede or impair this investigation in any way". However, his simply asking for leniency, without more, on behalf of someone he likes would not do it.

There was, Trump said, "zero" collusion with Russian Federation, and he wants to get back to the business of being president.

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The White House initially said last week that Trump was prompted to fire Comey after reading the Rosenstein letter.

Graham said congressional committees and subcommittees will now find it hard to subpoena the records of somebody like former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn or to call former FBI Director James Comey to testify: "If I were Mr. Mueller, I would jealously guard the witness pool", Graham said. He added, "there has been no effort to impede our investigation to date".

On Wednesday, an investigation into his campaign's ties with Moscow was significantly strengthened by the appointment of straight-shooting former FBI director Robert Mueller to lead it.

Ironically, Comey's own actions and testimony would bolster President Trump's defense against a charge of obstruction of justice.

A reporter asked if Rosenstein confirmed that the investigation into Russian influence and possible coordination with Trump associates is now a criminal investigation. There is no evidence that Comey did so. The below-ground facilities in the Capitol Visitors Center - one on the House side, one on the Senate side - are primarily used by national security committees to receive updates on classified or sensitive matters from top government officials, who regularly visit the Capitol to meet with lawmakers.

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"And we have very important things to be doing right now - whether it's trade deals, whether it's military, whether it's stopping nuclear".