Former FBI head Robert Mueller to oversee Trump-Russia investigation

20 May, 2017, 11:09 | Author: Valerie Burke
  • Analysis: Trump finds Russia probe out of his control

So now, less than four months into Trump's administration, his actions have led to the appointment of former Federal Bureau of Investigation director Robert Mueller, a famously nonpartisan, nonshowboat straight arrow who served George W. Bush and Barack Obama, as special counsel to investigate "this Russian Federation thing".

Sen. Claire McCaskill disagrees with fellow Democrats who have called for the impeachment of President Donald Trump, saying that it's too early to even consider it.

It was unclear what "illegal acts" Trump was referring to, though as a candidate he did pledge to appoint a special counsel to investigate his Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton's use of private email during her years as secretary of State - a threat he hasn't yet followed up on.

On the same day that the appointment of Robert Mueller as Special Counsel was announced, NBC News reported that the two key figures under direct criminal investigation from within the Trump campaign are former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn and campaign manager Paul Manafort.

The move aimed to quell the wave of criticism facing the Trump administration since the president fired Comey last week as the investigation intensified.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself in March after acknowledging undisclosed contacts with the Russian ambassador during the campaign, leaving the matter in Rosenstein's hands.

He asked how can anyone have confidence in somebody like Trump to not influence special counsel Mueller's investigation. "It seems to me now to be considered a criminal investigation", he said after a meeting with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, said he is determined to press forward with public hearings.

Presidential historian Douglas Brinkley said Trump is "not going to be able to jive his way out" of the Mueller-led probe.

Mueller's broad mandate gives him not only oversight of the Russian Federation probe, but also over "any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation".

Mueller can choose whether to consult with or inform the Justice Department about his investigation.

The selection of Mueller, a taciturn former federal prosecutor who led the FBI through the September 11 attacks, received bipartisan embrace.

"If I were Mr. Mueller I would jealously guard the witness pool", Graham said. "When I made that decision I actually thought it would be a bipartisan decision because you look at all of the people on the Democratic side, not only the Republican side, that were saying such awful thing about Director Comey". And House and Senate investigators had invited Comey back to Congress to explain what happened - although Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz declared on Twitter that he had trouble finding Comey to invite him to testify to the oversight committee he chairs. I guess that's why we won. Mueller will also investigate Russian intervention in the election generally.

Also on Wednesday night, a 2016 exchange among Republican House leadership surfaced in which majority leader Kevin McCarthy suggested that Donald Trump was on Vladimir Putin's payroll. Ryan said Congress "can't deal with speculation and innuendo" and m.

Now we're supposed to believe - again, with no hard evidence, this time from a New York Times report - that, one day after his national security advisor, Michael Flynn, resigned on February 14, President Trump obstructed justice by asking Comey to find a way to drop the FBI's investigation into Flynn's ties with the Russians. He retired from the agency after 12 years of service under the administration of President George W. Bush and President Barack.

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