Donald Trump: I haven't discussed Russian Federation probe with Matthew Whitaker

Late night comedians react to split Congress

The Mueller investigation appears to have advanced prior to the midterm elections, Allen said in a note, but Whitaker will likely immediately take steps to limit the scope and duration of the probe.

"I didn't speak to Matt Whitaker about it", Trump told a gaggle of reporters as he left the White House to fly to Paris.

"I worry people will see this as a partisan event", said VandenBerg, who said he had been a congressional staffer for former Sen.

Whitaker, speaking on CNN in 2017, said he had respect for Mueller and then went on to say he would be surprised if the special counsel had any concerns about the termination of Sessions and its effect on the investigation.

That opened the way for the new acting attorney-general, Matthew Whitaker, to assume direct supervision of Mueller, raising questions of whether he will halt the investigation to protect the president.

A copy of Attorney General Jeff Sessions' resignation letter is photographed in Washington on an image of the exterior of the Justice Department.

Given his role in the Trump campaign, Sessions had recused himself from overseeing the special counsel's investigation into potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation in the 2016 election, leaving oversight of the Mueller investigation to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

But Jayapal said she defends Mueller because of those results. He accused it of overreach. "He's just trying to get publicity for himself". That candidate, unlike Whitaker, would have to be confirmed by the Senate.

In the letter Sessions said he had been "honored... to implement the law enforcement agenda based on the rule of law that formed a central part" of the Trump campaign for presidency. Whitaker felt Mueller would focus on his job, regardless.

Jeff Sessions imminent departure as attorney general was expected, as he had been repeatedly criticized by Trump for recusing himself from the investigation of potential collusion between the president's campaign and Russian Federation.

U.S. President Donald Trump praised his interim replacement for ousted Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Friday, but aimed to distance himself from the controversial appointee by repeatedly saying he had only heard about Matthew Whitaker's reputation.

"He's probably, from what I hear, a very strong person, a very strong personality, and I think that's what they need", Trump said.

"He was very, very highly thought of, and still is highly thought of, but this only comes up because anybody that works for me - they do a number on them".

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says he expects President Donald Trump to nominate a new attorney general "pretty quickly" after Trump fired Jeff Sessions earlier this week.

Miller's lawyer told reporters Thursday that if they lose at the appeals court level, they intend to appeal the case to the Supreme Court.

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