Judge Nap: Whitaker Not 'Legally Qualified' to Be Acting Attorney General

Larry Hoffman
November 10, 2018

Hundreds of local activists protested against President Donald Trump on Thursday, opposing his controversial decision to ask for the resignation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, which they believe may threaten Robert Mueller's special counsel investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Trump added that he "didn't know" Whitaker and "simply took a man who worked for Sessions" to replace him temporarily.

Since Wednesday, Whitaker has faced pressure from Democrats to recuse himself from overseeing Mueller based on critical comments he made about the investigation before joining the Justice Department past year.

The president has called Mueller's investigation a "witch-hunt" and criticized Sessions for recusing himself from overseeing Mueller's probe.

Trump said it was up to Whitaker whether he would be involved in the investigation.

"This only comes up because anybody who works for me, they automatically do a number on", he said.

Whitaker has questioned Mueller's authority to investigate aspects of Trump's election campaign and suggested how to end the investigation: by cutting its budget.

"Trump's actions are being compared with those of U.S. President Richard Nixon in one of the most controversial episodes of the Watergate scandal, the Saturday Night Massacre", said organizers.

Toomey said he had no reason to think the Mueller probe would be disrupted.

"It's not necessary. The Mueller investigation is not under threat", McConnell told reporters. His job as Mr. Sessions' chief of staff did not require Senate confirmation.

He was accused of dismissing several US attorneys in 2006 for politically partisan purposes.

When asked if Whitaker should recuse himself from the Russian Federation investigation, Prior said, "No, I think there is no reason to recuse". Look, it's the Department of Justice investigation; it's not a congressional investigation. Within the Justice Department, there's little faith that Whitaker will recuse himself from the Mueller investigation, even if DOJ's career ethics officials recommend he do so. The group also urged people to pressure Congress to protect the Mueller investigation.

"I didn't speak to Matt Whitaker about it".

Speaking to reporters Friday, Trump said, "I don't know Matt Whitaker". "He's the acting attorney general".

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein's top deputy, Principal Associate Deputy Attorney General Ed O'Callaghan, met with lawyers from the special counsel's team, according to a source familiar with the matter - just as he has been doing on almost a biweekly basis for months, as CNN previously reported.

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