Published: Mon, June 19, 2017
U.S. | By Eddie Scott

Trump pal says president is 'considering' firing Robert Mueller

White House Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Tuesday night said that President Donald Trump has "no intention" of firing Robert Mueller, the special counsel in charge of the Russian Federation probe. There's at least one report suggesting he is considering it.

Schiff told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" on Tuesday that "I don't think the Congress would sit still and allow the president to pick his own investigator".

Rosenstein, who has been on the job for six weeks, described Mueller as operating independently from the Justice Department in his investigation into whether the Trump campaign coordinated with Russian Federation in the 2016 presidential election.

In theory, that chain of command doesn't matter. Even Comey acknowledged that much in his Senate testimony last week. Ruddy never spoke to the president regarding this issue.

Taking the opposite approach, Rep. Louis Gohmert, R-Texas, found this to be so troublesome that he recommended Trump give Mueller the boot. Federal law clearly and specifically prohibits anyone, including the president, from dismissing a duly appointed special counsel, except the attorney general.

The first barrier is the attorney general.

Rosenstein told lawmakers during a Justice Department budget hearing on Tuesday that he hasn't seen a "good cause" for firing Mueller.

Rosenstein "may remove a Special Counsel for misconduct, dereliction of duty, incapacity, conflict of interest, or for other good cause, including violation of Departmental policies", reads the regulation, which directs the deputy attorney general to put in writing the "specific reason" for the firing. "With respect to this subject, only the president or his attorneys are authorized to comment". The White House on Monday night said that Ruddy did not speak for Trump but did not deny that Trump was weighing whether to let Mueller go.

"If the White House truly has nothing to hide, they ought to encourage special counsel Mueller to investigate".

"I think that Mueller shouldn't have taken the position", Ruddy said, "if he was under consideration and had a private conversation with the president and was privy maybe to some of his thoughts about that investigation or other matters before the bureau".

"I think he is considering perhaps terminating the special counsel", Ruddy, who leads the conservative news website Newsmax, said on PBS NewsHour.

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) questioned Rosenstein about whether he has given Mueller "full independence" to conduct the investigation, to which Rosenstein replied that he is "confident" that Mueller has "full independence" in the investigation. Jeanne Shaheen, a New Hampshire Democrat, whether he has seen good cause to fire Mueller. Trump, who expressed displeasure with Session's withdrawal from the case, wouldn't hesitate to apply pressure.

Appearing Sunday on ABC's "This Week", Sekulow said that while the idea has not been brought up in the White House, Trump had not ruled out firing Mueller.

Justice Department rules prohibit the dismissal of a special counsel without cause.

"If the insane scenario that got me to this point in the hypothetical decision chain materializes, Congress would rise up quickly to stop the President, and the pressure on the cabinet would be enormous as well", Goldsmith wrote. "If I am naive in thinking this, then we are indeed in trouble". Get rid of Mueller.

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