Rod Rosenstein, man who appointed Robert Mueller, 'plans to leave' Justice Department

Charlene Craig
January 10, 2019

William Barr, President Donald Trump's nominee for attorney general, will allow special counsel Robert Mueller to finish his Russian Federation investigation, incoming Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham said Wednesday.

Barr's confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee is set to begin January 15, and The Washington Post reported that Rosenstein does not have a definitive timeline for departure.

For more than a year, Rosenstein has been overseeing special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into whether Russian Federation interfered with the 2016 presidential election. "Mueller is most conflicted of all (except Rosenstein who signed FISA & Comey letter)".

Rosenstein plans to leave at some point after that, though no date has been set and there is no formal plan for the departure, according to the person, who was not authorized to discuss internal conversations publicly and spoke on the condition of anonymity.

At a news conference in December, Rosenstein said that Mueller's investigation would be "handled appropriately" no matter who is overseeing it.

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The source said Rosenstein is not being forced out, and he has conveyed his thinking to the White House.

"I know the deputy attorney general has always planned to roughly stay around two years".

His former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, also pleaded guilty to a range of crime, including paying a pair of women alleging affairs with the President to keep quiet while Trump was running for office.

CNN said Barr told the White House he wanted his own deputy. Trump has called the investigation, which potentially threatens his presidency, a "rigged witch hunt".

"Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is out - oh wait, he isn't, but he might be soon".

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"The Senate 'should subject Mr. Barr's views to the strictest of scrutiny next week and I still believe, after the revelations about Mr. Barr's unsolicited memo, President Trump ought to withdraw this nomination", Schumer said.

Ahead of Barr's Senate confirmation hearing next week, top Justice Department officials have sought to downplay his previous argument that the president can't be investigated for obstructing justice.

Then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions, an early Trump supporter during the presidential campaign, had recused himself.

He has accused the investigation of being led by "Democrat loyalists".

Rosenstein has continued to help supervise the Mueller probe even as Trump's pick for Acting Attorney General, Matt Whitaker, assumed control of it, per NBC.

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