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Graham believes Russian Federation probe 'considered a criminal investigation'

19 May 2017

He also told them that he was not pressured into writing his memo. "He knew that Comey was going to be removed prior to him writing his memo", she said again.

Graham also had some advice for Trump, who wrote on Twitter Thursday morning that the appointment of a special counsel amounted to a "witch hunt".

Rosenstein received support from the Senate a month ago when he was confirmed by a vote of 94 to 6 to be the Justice Department's second-highest-ranking official.

Trump sent shockwaves across Washington last week by unceremoniously sacking his FBI director - a virtually unprecedented move that came as James Comey was heading an investigation into Team Trump's links to Russian Federation.

It was Trump's first time taking questions since his Justice Department named a special counsel to probe Russia's involvement in the 2016 election.

The appointment gives Mueller, who led the Federal Bureau of Investigation through the September 11 terrorist attacks and served under presidential administrations of both parties, sweeping powers to investigate whether Trump campaign associates colluded with the Kremlin to influence the outcome in his behalf, as well as the authority to prosecute any crimes uncovered during the probe. "Whatever the motivation for the investigation, Mueller is sufficiently well-respected that it likely won't be 'just for show.'" Daria explained that Rosenstein made a really good choice in appointing Mueller to special counsel.

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"With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special councel (sic) appointed!"

Describing it as a "witch hunt", U.S. President Donald Trump is reacting to the appointment of a special prosecutor to look at his campaign's ties to Russian Federation.

In the job, Mueller will have all the same powers as a USA attorney, though he will still ultimately report to Rosenstein. "You have two Senate committees that are looking into this". Instead, his only clear takeaway was that he would prefer the answers he did get to be aired by Rosenstein in public before a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.

"There is mounting evidence of obstruction of justice", said Blumenthal (D-Conn.) "No conclusion yet that there was, but that evidence needs to be pursued and there are a variety of pieces of evidence and the firing of Director Comey may be one of them".

Rosenstein fielded questions in the closed session for more than an hour, but many senators left the briefing unsatisfied.

Rosenstein is scheduled to address the House of Representatives on Friday.

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"I think it divides the country", Trump said of the special counsel.

"It was a counterintelligence investigation before now", says Graham. "It seems to me now to be considered a criminal investigation".

Rosenstein authored a memo criticizing Comey at length for his handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton's email practices as secretary of state.

However, President Donald Trump quickly unraveled the White House's official position in an interview with NBC when he said he was going to fire Comey regardless of the recommendation he received from Rosenstein. He felt "blindsided by this", another Republican close to the White House said.

Two days later, in a May 11 interview with NBC, Trump contradicted his own spokesmen and said he'd chose to fire Comey "regardless of the recommendation" of Rosenstein.

Earlier this week, during the daily press briefing on May 15, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said a special prosecutor wasn't needed to look into the Russian Federation investigation. "Impeccable credentials. Should be widely accepted".

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Graham believes Russian Federation probe 'considered a criminal investigation'