Trump wants Mueller probe delayed if Rosenstein leaves

Rod Rosenstein

"The New York Times's story is inaccurate and factually incorrect", Rosenstein said in an earlier statement.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has verbally resigned to Chief of Staff John Kelly in anticipation of being fired by President Trump, according to a source cited by Axios.

U.S. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein leaves after a meeting at the White House on Monday in Washington, DC.

The New York Times report said Rosenstein had discussed wearing a "wire" to tape Trump and pursuing his removal from office in meetings and conversations with Justice Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation officials.

However, the White House issued a brief statement Monday saying Rosenstein and Trump will meet Thursday, Fox News reported.

He has said he will not resign and that the White House would have to sack him, NBC reported.

The news comes days after The New York Times reported that Rosenstein suggested previous year that he secretly record Trump to "expose the chaos consuming the administration" and discussed "recruiting cabinet members to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Mr. Trump from office for being unfit".

In the wake of the Times report, Democrats have warned Trump not to remove Rosenstein.

The departure of Rosenstein - possibly giving Trump an opportunity to get more of a loyalist as a replacement - would dramatically rock the probe into whether Russian Federation colluded with the Trump campaign in his shock presidential election victory in 2016.

Rosenstein's departure would prompt questions about the future of Mueller's investigation and whether Trump, who has called the probe a "witch hunt", would seek to remove Mueller.

Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal of CT said at a news conference Monday that if Rosenstein is fired it would amount to a "break the glass moment", and said that he hopes that Republican lawmakers "will rise to this challenge and will hold true to their promise that there would be a firestorm if he is fired".

Trump has regularly targeted both Rosenstein and Attorney General Jeff Sessions since Mueller was first tapped in May 2017 to oversee the FBI's investigation into possible collusion between the Russian government and the Trump campaign, as well as possible obstruction of justice committed by the president when he fired FBI Director James Comey past year. "I will not further comment on a story based on anonymous sources are obviously biased against the department and are advancing their own personal agenda".

Whether he is fired or resigns on his own could affect who will oversee the Russian Federation investigation.

Maher joked, "Now that the 25th Amendment, the one about removing a president who's incapacitated, keeps popping up in the news, someone has to explain to me if it was written specifically for this guy, then who is it for?"

It was later revealed, as we suspected, that Rod Rosenstein will not be fired today. It runs first to the deputy attorney general, then the associate attorney general, and then the solicitor general, followed by assistant attorneys general.

Top administration officials responded to that op-ed and the revelations around Mr. Rosenstein in much the same way: telling anyone who believes the president is unfit for office to find a new job. "Nothing like a Constitutional crisis to distract from a Supreme Court Confirmation crisis", he tweeted.

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