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Trump Weighing Firing Special Counsel Robert Mueller

Trump Weighing Firing Special Counsel Robert Mueller

Earlier in the day, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said he's seen no basis for firing Robert Mueller, the former FBI director he appointed as special counsel to oversee an investigation into potential coordination between the Trump presidential campaign and Russian Federation.

Sam Nunberg, who worked for Trump's presidential campaign, said it "could seem to be a conflict" for Mueller to first interview with the president to be a possible replacement for fired FBI Director James Comey and then days later to be named as the special counsel heading an investigation that could look into Comey's firing.

A longtime friend of Trump, Christopher Ruddy, said on PBS's "Newshour" that the president is "considering, perhaps, terminating the special counsel".

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich said Tuesday on ABC's "Good Morning America" that while he feels "independent counsels are very risky", he doesn't think Trump should force Mueller out.

In his interview Ruddy claimed Trump had interviewed Mueller for the position of Federal Bureau of Investigation director several days before Rosenstein appointed him special counsel.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Monday that Ruddy did not speak with Trump about firing Mueller as special counsel and other White House aides suggested the Newsmax CEO was only speaking for himself.

Ruddy issued a terse response directed at Spicer, but also admitted he didn't speak to Trump personally about this.

Mr Mueller, who was tasked by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein with overseeing the justice department's investigation, has started selecting members of his team, many of them criminal law experts.

In an interview with ABC News on Sunday, Trump attorney Jay Sekulow said he didn't want to speculate on whether or not the president would fire Mueller. But I'm noticing a trend here: If something is bad for Republicans, Newt thinks it should be abolished.

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Mr Mueller is in the earliest stages of his investigation and still building up his team that will lead the probe. Nixon directed his attorney general and deputy attorney general to fire Cox, but they refused and resigned. "With respect to this subject, only the President or his attorneys are authorised to comment".

Rosenstein is scheduled to testify today before both Senate and House subcommittees regarding the Justice Department's budget, and he is likely to be questioned about Mueller's status.

"I'm not going to follow any orders unless I believe those are proper and appropriate orders", he said. Under the regulation, Special Counsel Mueller may be fired only for good cause, and I am required to put that cause in writing.

"You're creating a debate that's not happening", said House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy on Tuesday morning, responding to a reporter's question about the rumor.

Prominent radio host Mark Levin wrote on Facebook that "Mueller must step aside", while commentator Ann Coulter said there was no point in keeping him after Mr Comey confirmed that Mr Trump was not under investigation.

Rosenstein is the only person who can fire Mueller under current Justice Department regulations - though those regulations could theoretically be set aside.

Sessions refused to say whether he had ever discussed the Russian Federation investigation with Trump, arguing that he could not disclose private communications with the president.

A number of key Republicans have publicly advised Trump to keep Mueller.

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