Trump Announces He's Under Investigation
- Author: Salvatore Jensen Jun 18, 2017,
Jun 18, 2017, 22:49
Trump's young presidency has been battered by allegations - under investigation both by Congress and the FBI - that Russian Federation interfered to sway the 2016 election in his favour, in possible collusion with Trump's campaign team.
"Witch Hunt." The tweet marked the first time Trump has publicly acknowledged that he is under investigation personally.
Mr Trump did not identify "the man", but seemed to be questioning the integrity of Deputy Attorney- General Rod Rosenstein, the Justice Department's No. 2 official who appointed Mr Mueller on May 17, supervises the probe and wrote a memo to Mr Trump critical of Mr Comey that preceded Mr Comey's firing.
"Even his staunchest supporters will balk at such a blatant effort to subvert the law", Feinstein said.
Trump "believes that he has the power to fire anyone in government he chooses and for any reason", said Representative Adam Schiff, whose committee is also investigating Russia-Trump ties.
The President's tweet - seeming to confirm the probe based on news reports - came as a surprise to the President's own legal team, according to a person briefed on the matter.
Peter Carr, a spokesman for Mueller, said he now has "13 attorneys on board, with several more in the pipeline".
Since Rosenstein recommended the firing, he could be a witness in the case and ethically obligated to recuse himself. The said allegation, if proven true, can lead to Donald Trump's impeachment. As it were, many Americans happen to disagree with that assessment.
Leading Democrats in the U.S. Congress on June 16 warned President Donald Trump against firing the Justice Department special counsel who is investigating alleged Russian meddling in the presidential election.
But some Republicans have appeared to sour on Mueller in recent days, arguing that his friendship with Comey and decision to hire prosecutors who have donated to Democratic candidates gave the appearance of conflicts.
If Rosenstein were out of the picture, responsibility for overseeing Mueller's investigation - and deciding his fate - would fall to Rachel Brand, the department's associate attorney general.
Rosenstein was among those who advised Sessions to recuse himself, according to officials briefed on the matter.
"He's in for a rude awakening" if he thinks he can shut down the investigation that way, said Feinstein. "The Special Counsel's Office will be able to move forward on investigative steps already taken".