White House Says Trump Has 'No Intention' To Fire Special Counsel

Randall Padilla
June 15, 2017

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

DAVID MUIR: And while Attorney General Jeff Sessions was testifying on Capitol Hill, President Trump was on a road trip to talk about jobs in this country, but following him to Wisconsin, this question tonight: Is the President now considering firing special prosecutor Robert Mueller who is now overseeing the Russian Federation investigation? As the former host of both "The Apprentice" and "The Celebrity Apprentice", not to mention his lengthy career as a real estate and "branding" entrepreneur, President Trump brings a special expertise to the subject of firing people.

"If there were not good cause, it would not matter to me what anybody said", he said.

"While the president has the right to, he has no intention to do so", said deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders in a press briefing aboard Air Force One on Tuesday evening.

Trump's best play would be to allow Mueller to do his job without interference, and - if Trump is telling the truth - declare the issue is dead for lack of substance.

Lawmakers also asked Rosenstein whether it was appropriate for Attorney General Jeff Sessions to be involved in the firing of James Comey as FBI director given Sessions' recusal from any investigation into Trump's campaign.

"I think that he should be more cognizant of making sure that the people who come to work with him are non-partisan, for his own credibility", Bennett said of Mueller. She then added that in a separate testimony Tuesday, Rosenstein told a Senate panel he wouldn't allow it.

Mr Sessions vigorously denied having an undisclosed meeting with Russia's ambassador to the US. Rosenstein said Tuesday that Mueller has his full backing to conduct an independent investigation. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii.

White House staffers have nonetheless sought to talk Trump down from the idea. Democrats and millions of Americans won't buy it, but Mueller's reputation would be hard to question and that could put an end to it. Trump, who isn't typically shy about leveling criticism, especially on Twitter, hasn't commented on the longtime former Federal Bureau of Investigation director.

Even as leading Republican legislators Tuesday waved off the idea of firing Mueller, expressions of discontent with Mueller have bubbled up nonetheless.

"I think he's considering perhaps terminating the special counsel", Chris Ruddy told "PBS NewsHour" on Monday. And his ability to endure a free-ranging investigation, directed by Mr. Mueller, that could raise questions about the legitimacy of his Electoral College victory, the topic that most provokes his rage, will be a critical test for a president who has continued on Twitter and elsewhere to flout the advice of his staff, friends and legal team.

At a Senate appropriations committee hearing, Rosenstein hinted - without confirming directly - that Mueller's investigation could probe deep into Trump's White House.

Trump has made it clear that he is frustrated by the USA probe of Russian interference in the presidential election, which United States intelligence officials said was done to tilt the outcome in Trump's favor.

Anxiety about the probe - and fresh concerns about the political leanings of some of the attorneys involved - is percolating in the West Wing of the White House.

The report stated that Trump was angered when he learned of the relationship and made plans to dump Mueller before being convinced it would be a disastrous move.

Mueller was interviewed by the Justice Department and by the president for the director's position, according to a senior White House official.

But Stephen Gillers, a New York University professor who specializes in legal and judicial ethics, said the Mueller interview with Trump presented "no conflict whatsoever".

Shortly after Robert Mueller was named special counsel in the federal Russian Federation investigation, lawmakers speculated that the congressional probes may be sidelined by the forceful new presence. Still, Gingrich said any special counsel with an agenda can "all of the sudden find something procedural and technical to latch onto".

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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