Tags: Russia Probe | lindsey graham | rod rosenstein | special counsel | robert mueller | justice department

Sen. Graham: Rosenstein Is 'Conflicted' in Mueller Probe

Sen. Graham: Rosenstein Is 'Conflicted' in Mueller Probe
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. (Ron Sachs/AP)

By    |   Tuesday, 05 June 2018 09:12 PM

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., on Tuesday raised the question of whether Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein can remain in charge of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation — because "you can't be a witness and oversee the investigation."

In remarks to reporters, Graham said Rosenstein is "conflicted" because he drafted a memo the Trump administration initially used to justify the firing of former FBI Director James Comey

"If you're looking at obstruction of justice misconduct post-presidency, the Comey firing as being a form of obstruction of justice, then Rosenstein is a key witness in that, and you can't be a witness and oversee the investigation," Graham said.

Graham said he sent Rosenstein a letter questioning his role overseeing the investigation into Russia's election interference and potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Moscow.

According to The Hill, Graham noted in the letter it has been "widely reported" Mueller's probe also includes investigating if Trump obstructed the Russia probe by firing Comey.

"Do you consider yourself a potential witness in the Mueller investigation regarding the firing of Director Comey by President Trump?" Graham asked in the letter, The Hill reported.

If the answer is yes, Graham asked if Rosenstein believes he should step back from the Mueller probe.

Graham indicated Tuesday he has not gotten an answer to his letter.

"He's a fine man, very ethical, good guy, but we're going to play this thing straight," Graham said. "Here's the question for Rosenstein, if you're going to be a fact witness as to why Comey was fired, how do you stay involved?"

Rosenstein has reportedly explored potentially stepping back from the Russia investigation, consulting with ethics officials about his role, The Hill reported.

He took over the Russia investigation after Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself because of his role as an adviser for Trump's presidential campaign. Trump has been relentlessly critical of Sessions' decision.

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Because "you can't be a witness and oversee the investigation," Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., called out Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein as "conflicted" in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation
lindsey graham, rod rosenstein, special counsel, robert mueller, justice department
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2018-12-05
Tuesday, 05 June 2018 09:12 PM
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