Whitaker’s recusal from Mueller’s Russian Federation investigation requested by 18 state AGs

09 November, 2018, 05:53 | Author: Lucy Floyd
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Special Counsel Robert Mueller lost crucial protective insulation for his Russian Federation collusion investigation when President Donald Trump fired attorney general Jeff Sessions on Wednesday.

Whitaker, a former US attorney, is a well-known figure in conservative legal circles in Washington, D.C.

But there has also been speculation Mr Trump could try to kill or suppress the 18 month-old probe, pressing his view that Mr Mueller leads a team staffed by Democrats operating under an illegal mandate.

Trump saw the move as a betrayal and frequently and publicly criticised Sessions for making the decision to recuse himself.

"It is time for Rosenstein.to order Mueller to limit the scope of his investigation to the four corners of the order appointing him special counsel", Whitaker wrote.

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Without Sessions' campaign or Russian Federation entanglements, there's no legal reason Whitaker couldn't immediately oversee the probe.

As deputy attorney general, Rosenstein is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Justice Department, including the activities of the country's USA attorneys. Nadler and other Democrats on the committee suggested the shakeup appears to be an effort to alter oversight of special counsel Robert Mueller's probe in a way that favors the president.

"Under acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker, it is imperative that the important work of the justice department continues, and that the Mueller investigation proceed to its conclusion unimpeded", Romney said on Twitter.

Answering allegations that the White House had used a clip edited by a notorious right-wing conspiracy theorist, Trump spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said: "We stand by our statement".

"And to outsiders, it looks like he [Trump] chose this person because this person has committed to end this investigation, this person is loyal to Donald Trump". "It would be laughable if it wasn't so serious as a threat to democracy".

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Most of Whitaker's career has been spent in private practice, including at a Des Moines law firm he founded with other Republican Party activists in 2009.

In a CNN op-ed past year, Whitaker wrote, "Mueller has come up to a red line in the Russian Federation 2016 election-meddling investigation that he is dangerously close to crossing". Whitaker held the position until 2009. He added that he'd also support amending the U.S. Constitution to define marriage as exclusively between one man and one woman.

In both cases Whitaker could stand in the way.

After leaving the office of US attorney in 2009, Whitaker, along with Chris Hagenow and Bill Gustoff, founded the law firm Whitaker Hagenow & Gustoff LLP. Whitaker is Sessions' former chief of staff.

Whitaker's private legal career largely focused on white collar litigation. "I don't trust him or the people he cloaks himself with", protestor Dawn Roads said. "No one is above the law", Schiff said. After Pawlenty's bid fizzled, he served in the 2012 and 2016 presidential campaigns of Rick Perry, the former Texas governor who is now energy secretary. Whitaker garnered more than 11,000 votes in the primary, which he lost to Joni Ernst who went on to win election to the Senate.

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