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emfizz.com October 23, 2017


Illinois Democrats applaud decision to appoint special counsel in Russian Federation investigation

20 May 2017, 09:19 | Terri Saunders

President Donald Trump on Thursday said there was no collusion between his campaign and Russian Federation - while adding the caveat that he can speak only for himself - and denied ever asking FBI Director James Comey to back off his agency's investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

Rosenstein's order came a week after he played a key role in Trump's firing of Comey, who had overseen the FBI's Russian Federation investigation since last July.

Trump responded by once again denying any links to Moscow, but the appointment of a special counsel with sweeping powers dramatically raises the stakes in a crisis threatening to paralyse his presidency.

During Thursday's news conference, Trump contradicted both his own account and that of Rosenstein.

The White House on Tuesday sought to tamp down the controversy with national security adviser HR McMaster telling reporters that what the president shared with the Russian officials "was wholly appropriate to that conversation and is consistent with the routine sharing of information between the president and any leaders with whom he's engaged". "This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!" The U.S. Department of Justice announced it has appointed former FBI Director Robert Mueller to head the investigation.

Senators said that Rosenstein steered clear of specifics while making clear that Mueller has wide latitude to pursue the investigation wherever it leads, including potentially criminal charges.

"I think that it's nearly surprising that a similar move wasn't made earlier", Hurl said.

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The deputy attorney general penned a memo criticising Comey's handling of the probe into Trump's defeated rival Hillary Clinton's emails, which provided the White House with the rationale for firing him - and raised questions about Rosenstein's ability to remain politically independent.

He offered new justifications for his decision Thursday, even while referring to the Rosenstein memo as "a very, very strong recommendation". "The investigation would have always continued, and obviously, the termination of Comey would not have ended it". "And then on top of that, after the Wednesday performance by Director Comey, you had a person come and have to readjust the record, which many people have never seen before, because there were misstatements made".

"That was a poor, poor performance", Trump said.

Considering the unique circumstances of this matter, Rosenstsein said a special counsel is necessary in order for the American people to have full confidence in the outcome.

The conversation happened on May 10, a day after Trump fired Comey, who had been overseeing the FBI's investigation into whether Trump campaign operatives colluded with Russian officials to interfere in the 2016 presidential election.

He finally fired Comey last week, in a move legal experts say could become the basis for an obstruction of justice investigation against the beleaguered American president.

The House intelligence committee announced that it had asked for documents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Justice Department. "I hope that we don't inadvertently trip up or damage the independent investigation of the special counsel", he said.



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