The Senate's top Republican expressed confidence Friday that the Russian Federation investigation will be allowed to run its course, saying President Donald Trump has never signaled to him that special counsel Robert Mueller could be fired.
John Yoo, a former Justice Department lawyer in the George W. Bush administration, said "the Supreme Court made clear that the Attorney General is a principal officer", in a 1998 case.
Speaking to reporters at the White House, Trump defended his choice of Whitaker, who has been panned by critics for his past comments on the probe, saying the former U.S. attorney had an excellent reputation and came highly recommended by former Iowa Governor Terry Branstad, who is now Trump's ambassador to China.
"The only two paths to that office are regular succession, and advice (and) consent", said a source close to the Senate Judiciary Committee. The Senate's top Republican predicted a permanent replacement could be named soon for Whitaker, who is now overseeing the Trump-Russia probe.
A group of 18 USA state attorneys general Thursday urged the new Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker to recuse himself from an ongoing investigation on the alleged Russian involvement in the 2016 US general elections. The latest indication of his fury came Wednesday when he forced out his attorney general, Jeff Sessions, whose recusal opened the door to Mueller's appointment.
Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer on Friday sent a letter to Trump questioning the legality of Whitaker's appointment, since he was not confirmed by the Senate.
Mueller is probing both Russia's interference and whether Trump's presidential campaign may have colluded with Moscow.
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Democrats have tried to turn the investigation around on Kemp, accusing him of suppressing thousands of minority votes. Kemp and Abrams both condemned the calls.
When posting the joint letter on Twitter, Maura Healey, Attorney General of MA, said that Whitaker's "hostility to the Special Councel's investigation disqualifies him from overseeing Robort Muller".
Rosenstein told reporters Friday that based on his experiences with Whitaker, "I think he's a superb choice for attorney general". He added that Whitaker's role heading the Justice Department will be a brief one.
Whitaker has made public comments critical of Mueller's investigation, and critics have called on Whitaker to recuse himself from oversight of the inquiry.
Trump said, "No matter who I put in, they go after him ..." That contradicted Trump's remarks on Fox News last month, when he called Whitaker "a great guy" and said, "I mean, I know Matt Whitaker".
Speaking to reporters Friday, Trump said, "I don't know Matt Whitaker". "He's said repeatedly it's going to be allowed to finish".
"He was very, very highly thought of, and still is highly thought of, but this only comes up because anybody that works for me, they do a number on them", Trump said.
McConnell, meanwhile, said, "I think this will be a very interim AG".