Justice Department's Rosenstein assures Congress of special counsel's independence in Russian Federation probe

President Donald Trump smiles during a Cabinet meeting, Monday, June 12, 2017, in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington. Trump, who expressed displeasure with Session's withdrawal from the case, wouldn't hesitate to apply pressure.

Special counsel former FBI Director Robert Mueller could only be fired by Deputy US Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

"I think it would be a mistake to fire Mueller, but I also think the basis of his investigation is flim-flam", he said. Ruddy however, doubled down on the idea, telling NBC in a statement Spicer's statement was "bizarre" and doesn't deny his claim.

Christopher Ruddy, who is the CEO of conservative Newsmax Media, told PBS on Monday night that Trump was "weighing that option".

Feinstein also asked if Rosenstein had an estimate for how long the investigation will take.

Rosenstein replied "We're not briefing the Oval Office, so I don't know how they would get there". Lindsey Graham, Rosenstein said that having given political donations is not a disqualifier. "Nixon kept firing everyone who was investigating him".

Newt Gingrich, an informal Trump adviser, said on Twitter that "Republicans are delusional if they think the special counsel is going to be fair..."

President Trump's friend Christopher Ruddy, the CEO of Newsmax Media - has suggested that the Trump may now terminate Robert Mueller, the special counsel appointed to lead the FBI investigation into the Trump team's Russian Federation ties.

Asked in a Senate Appropriations Committee hearing if there was any cause to fire Mueller, Rosenstein flatly replied: "No".

Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) asked Rosenstein about the current tension between state and federal marijuana laws.

Rosenstein testified that he is the only one who has the authority to fire Mueller, who was appointed following the May 9 ousting of James Comey as Federal Bureau of Investigation director, and that he had seen no good cause to do so. "If there were not good cause it wouldn't matter what anyone said".

Ruddy said the ethics behind Mueller's presence are concerning considering how he was appointed to be special counsel.

Under questioning from Sen.

Rosenstein said that if he fired Mueller, he would be required to explain it in writing.

"Many have suggested that my recusal is because I felt I was a subject of the investigation myself, that I may have done something wrong", Sessions added. Rosenstein assured the Committee that only he had the power to fire the special counsel, and that it could only be done for "good cause". Rosenstein responded: "No I have not". Cox was eventually fired by Solicitor General Robert Bork.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions heatedly denied on Tuesday having an undisclosed meeting with Russia's ambassador to the USA or conversations with any Russian officials about the US election that sent Donald Trump to the White House.

"You have my assurance that we are faithfully going to follow that regulation, and Director Mueller is going to have the independence he needs".

"Chris speaks for himself", said Sarah Huckabee Sanders, deputy White House press secretary.

But after the testimony of former FBI Director James Comey last week, Gingrich said he'd changed his mind. Ryan said, "I don't know his team".

"He called me because I've been very clear about the fact that Mueller hiring four Democrats - his first four attorneys are all Democrats".

At his confirmation hearing, then-Sen.

Session will also testify before the House later Tuesday, where he is also scheduled to discuss the department budget.

Leahy told Rosenstein "you are not the witness who should be behind this table". Trump himself does not have the authority to directly fire the special counsel.

Mueller has been silent since he was named to head the Russian Federation investigation on May 17, a week after Trump fired FBI chief James Comey expressing frustration over the probe.

Sessions lent his support to the special counsel, Robert Mueller, who is now in charge of the Justice Department's Russian Federation investigation. That, to me, is the smartest thing to do, the best thing to do, and that's what I think hopefully will happen.

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