Published: Wed, June 14, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

Rosenstein says he's seen no good cause to fire Mueller


(That ignores the fact that other Trump campaign figures might be under investigation.) There also have been complaints that Mueller is a friend of Comey's.

WASHINGTON (AP) - Attorney General Jeff Sessions heatedly denied on Tuesday that he had any undisclosed meeting with the Russian ambassador or conversations with Russian officials about the US elections.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions says he did not have third meeting with the Russian ambassador to the United States.

The comment came in response to questions from Democratic Sen.

So, Rosenstein continues, his determination on whether to carry out an order to fire Mueller depends on his judgment about whether there is good cause for him to do so.

He told senators during a committee hearing that there would have to be "good cause" for Mueller to be removed from his role.

SHAHEEN: As I understand, Mr. Rosenstein, in this matter you are actually the one exercising hiring and firing authority, because Attorney General Sessions is recused.

Several Trump associates and confidantes are supposedly pushing the president to remove Mueller because he has proven himself to be partisan and untrustworthy.

"Morning Joe" host Joe Scarborough said Tuesday that three White House sources informed him that President Donald Trump never told Newsmax Media CEO Chris Ruddy that he was considering firing special counsel Robert Mueller.

Mueller was appointed on May 17 by the Justice Department as special counsel overseeing the investigation into Russia's alleged meddling in the 2016 USA elections and related matters. "If there were not good cause, it wouldn't matter to me what anybody says", he testifies. Rosenstein responded: "No I have not". Rosenstein appears to be saying that unlike the Federal Bureau of Investigation director, who serves at the pleasure of the president, there is a far higher bar to fire the special counsel - there must be good cause, and he wouldn't do it without good cause.

He says he is confident that Mueller will have "the full independence he needs" to investigate thoroughly. Ruddy never spoke to the president regarding this issue.

House Speaker Paul Ryan told reporters Tuesday any talk about Trump wanting to rid himself of the special investigator amounts to "rumor".

"I think we should let Bob Mueller do his work and get to the bottom of it, and get to the bottom of it quickly so that he can be vindicated", Ryan said.

"I think he's weighing that option", Ruddy told PBS "NewsHour" when asked if Trump would let Mueller continue in his role in the Russian Federation probe.

Rosenstein is appearing before the appropriations subcommittee that oversees the Department of Justice's budget because Attorney General Jeff Sessions cancelled his scheduled appearance after agreeing to appear before the Senate Intelligence Committee Tuesday.

"Senator, I'm not going to follow any order unless I believe those are lawful and appropriate orders", Rosenstein said. And he can expect questions about his involvement in Comey's May 9 firing, the circumstances surrounding his decision to recuse himself from the FBI's investigation, and whether any of his actions - such as interviewing candidates for the FBI director position or meeting with Trump about Comey - violated his recusal pledge.

The comments came a day after a close friend of President Donald Trump was quoted in a television interview as saying the president was considering dismissing Mueller. "I have confidence in Bob Mueller".

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