House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., on Thursday praised the choice of former FBI Director Robert Mueller to lead the investigation into Russian election interference, but questioned the involvement of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.
Pelosi described Mueller as "a respected public servant of the highest integrity," but warned that his being appointed by Rosenstein sparked "suspicions" that the White House will attempt to influence the inquiry.
"Members will have questions about the integrity and the independence of this investigation. It is within the Trump-appointed Justice Department," Pelosi said at a press briefing, according to The Hill.
"When we were asking for a special prosecutor, now counsel, we were saying it should be appointed by somebody not appointed by President Trump — the highest-ranking non-Trump-appointed official there. Rosenstein made the appointment," she added.
"The most important question is this: What is the independence of this commission? What is the discretion it will be allowed to have? And what is the attitude of the deputy attorney general in that regard right from the start?"
Pelosi then repeated that she is "concerned," despite Rosenstein receiving strong Democratic support during his Senate confirmation, which passed 94-6.
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