Trump Fires Attorney General Jeff Sessions
Just a day after the midterm elections, President Donald Trump has fired embattled Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Wednesday.
Sessions, who faced repeated criticism from Trump for recusing himself from the investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election, said in a letter he was submitting his resignation at the president’s request.
In a post on Twitter, Trump revealed Sessions’ Chief of Staff Matthew Whitaker will become acting Attorney General.
“We thank Attorney General Jeff Sessions for his service, and wish him well!” Trump added in a subsequent tweet. “A permanent replacement will be nominated at a later date”
A report from CNN said Whitaker, who has been openly critical of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of Russian meddling in the election, is expected to assume oversight of the probe.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., argued Whitaker should follow Sessions’ lead and recuse himself due to his past comments about the investigation.
“Given his previous comments advocating defunding and imposing limitations on the Mueller investigation, Mr. Whitaker should recuse himself from its oversight for the duration of his time as acting attorney general,” Schumer said in a post on Twitter.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., also urged Whitaker to recuse himself, calling Sessions’ firing “another blatant attempt” by Trump to undermine and end Mueller’s investigation.
Sessions, a former Republican Senator, recused himself from the investigation in March of 2017 over undisclosed meetings with the Russian ambassador.
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein appointed Mueller to lead the investigation in May of 2017 after Sessions recused himself.
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