Dem leaders call on acting AG to recuse himself from Russian Federation probe

Hannah Rogers
November 12, 2018

Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., the incoming chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, described Trump's appointment of Whitaker as "an attack" on the Mueller investigation and said protecting that probe will be his committee's top priority. There's always been speculation that the special counsel was holding off on making any big moves until after the midterm elections, because of DOJ guidelines barring investigators from taking any overt actions that could be seen as influencing the outcome of an election.

The letter to the Justice Department asked Lofthus to explain his reasoning for any recommendation he made to Whitaker regarding recusal and to provide all ethics guidance provided to the acting attorney general.

On Thursday, The Washington Post reported that Whitaker has no plans to recuse himself from overseeing the Russian Federation investigation, despite his history of making antagonistic remarks about the special counsel.

Protestors are marching to raise the alarm about the "existential threat" Whitaker poses to Mueller's investigation and that "nobody is above the law".

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), one of President Trump's top congressional confidants, said on CBS's "Face the Nation" that he's sure Whitaker will assert "no political influence" on the investigation. The group also held flashlights, the said it was to shine a light on President Trump's corruption.

"I've told him (Trump) many times that there's no way to make an investigation like this shorter, but there's lots of ways to make it longer, and he's executed on a number of those ways to make it longer", Christie said in May at the University of Chicago, while calling Mueller "an honest. hard-working guy".

In the president's orbit, there remains some concern about his eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., though there are no outward indications that charges are imminent, according to a Republican close to the White House not authorized to speak publicly about private conversations.

Clashes reach residential streets in Yemen's Hodeida
The Houthis were taken by surprise, he said, adding that the city is witnessing heavy battles and major advances by Yemeni forces. Saudi Arabia said in a statement that US assistance was no longer needed due to their own advancements in refueling.

It is not clear when Trump intends to nominate a candidate for attorney general. Federal prosecutors have said in court papers that the case involves numerous "uncharged" third parties and have argued against disclosing search warrants and other documents that would "certainly result in a very public guessing game" about their identities.

Christie then met privately with the President's son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner to further discuss prison reform issues, an administration official who works on the prison reform effort said. In the months before, Whitaker was a familiar presence on CNN, where he questioned Mueller's scope and reach.

On Thursday, CNN reported that as Trump was preparing to replace Sessions with Whitaker, the president had already begun reviewing the answers his lawyers had put together to send back to the special counsel.

Lawmakers' reaction to Whitaker taking over the Russian Federation probe was divided along partisan lines.

Despite demands from Democrats that he recuse because of his past comments, Whitaker showed no signs Thursday that he meant to do so.

"Based on my experience with Matt", said John Richter, a former U.S. Attorney in Oklahoma and high-ranking Bush administration Justice Department official, "I think he will act consistently with the best traditions of the department and call things as he sees them". But Conway downplayed the acting attorney general's past criticism of the investigation.

Prior to becoming governor, Christie was a U.S. Attorney in New Jersey from 2002-2008.

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