Will Trump Fire Rosenstein? Republicans Believe It Would Be a Huge Mistake

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Former FBI agent Asha Rangappa said the Justice Department must prove to those judges that the surveillance is providing useful, ongoing intelligence showing their subject is acting on behalf of a foreign power. Reporters also asked if he retained confidence in Rosenstein; Trump was responding to both questions with his terse reply.

Earlier on Friday, President Donald Trump refused to give a clear-cut answer on whether he was considering firing Rosenstein after Trump approved the declassification of a memo that alleges Federal Bureau of Investigation abuses its authority regarding Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrants.

On Wednesday, CNN reported that President Trump is turning up the heat on Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, pressing him for details on the findings of Mueller's Russian Federation probe.

President Trump calls it a "Witch Hunt", but the Justice Department on Friday strongly defended special counsel Robert Mueller's probe into Russia's involvement in the 2016 election.

"You figure that one out", he said.

Pelosi maintained Republicans had "cherry-picked" information about the Russian Federation probe in an attempt to discredit the Mueller investigation.

Burnett then moved on to asking him about the memo and the way President Trump was hyping it up.

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"If Trump fires Rosenstein, there will be a strong reaction since the reasonable assumption will be that the president is trying to limit or even fire Mueller", said Larry Sabato, a political science professor at the University of Virginia.

Deputy U.S. Attorney General Rod Rosenstein testifies to the House Judiciary Committee hearing on oversight of the Justice Department on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., December 13, 2017. "If the President is looking to fire Mr. Rosenstein, he will have to look outside the Nunes memo for his pretext", Nadler writes.

"The reason it might be better to fire the boss is Rod Rosenstein sets the investigation", the California Democrat said. Short of firing, Rosenstein's replacement could sharply limit the scope of Mueller's investigation and prevent his final report from being released publicly.

Sessions says he will "forward to appropriate DOJ components all information I receive from Congress regarding this".

Also signing on were the top Democrats on the two Intelligence committees, Rep. Adam Schiff from the House and Sen. And there's no sense that Rachel Brand, the current No. 3 at the Justice Department, would be viewed any more favorably by Trump.

In a letter to lawmakers that accompanied the memo, Trump's top lawyer wrote the decision came because of the "significant public interest" in the document. Along with FBI Director Christopher Wray, he made a last-ditch plea this week to White House Chief of Staff John Kelly about the dangers of releasing the document.

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