Dem lawmaker warns Trump against firing Mueller

Trump’s Twitter response followed days of intensifying criticism of Mueller from some conservatives, who have charged the former Federal Bureau of Investigation director and his team with political bias and have claimed his relationship to Comey and an earlier meeting with Trump amount to conflicts of interest.Trump, however, referred to the Post’s reporting as a “phony story” in a tweet Thursday morning.”Americans should exercise caution before accepting as true any stories attributed to anonymous ‘officials, ‘ particularly when they do not identify the country – let alone the branch or agency of government – with which the alleged sources supposedly are affiliated”.Trump, alluding to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, wrote that he is being “investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director!”It was not clear whether the president was basing his tweet on direct knowledge, or on reports this week that special counsel Robert Mueller is examining whether he obstructed justice by firing Mr Comey last month amid the Russian Federation investigation. Mueller also has expansive powers to investigate any matters that develop from his initial investigation.It was not clear if Trump’s comment was based on news reports or if the White House had been given official notice.The move ordered Thursday by the transition’s general counsel cast a wide net on documents tied to the Russian Federation investigation as well as inquiries into the activities of Trump associates. He’s increasingly focused his anger at both Rosenstein and Mueller, according to advisers and confidants, viewing the two as part of a biased effort to undermine his presidency. But soon after the abrupt termination, Trump told NBC News that he had been going to fire Comey regardless of any recommendations. “That’s undemocratic on its face and a blatant violation of the president’s oath of office”. The intelligence committee is the lead congressional panel on the Russian Federation hacking scandal, including highly publicized hearings with fired FBI Director James Comey and Attorney General Jeff Sessions. But Rosenstein, too, may ultimately have to hand off oversight of the probe given his own role in Comey’s firing. Trump initially used that memo along with a recommendation from Sessions to justify firing Comey.Comey told Congress last week that he leaked his memos of his conversations Trump to a friend after a tweet by the president suggested he may have taped the conversations.Former FBI Director Mueller was put in charge of the investigation after Trump fired Comey and public pressure mounted for a special counsel to take over.The transition official spoke on condition of anonymity because the person was not authorized to discuss post-election decisions publicly.Comey, whom Trump fired in early May, said in Senate testimony earlier this month that the President spoke to him privately on February 14 and asked him to drop the bureau’s investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn’s alleged ties to Russian Federation.The White House has directed questions for details to outside legal counsel, which has not responded.On Thursday an aide to Vice President Mike Pence revealed he was hiring Richard Cullen – a veteran of the Iran-Contra investigation, Watergate and the 2000 vote recount in Florida – as a private lawyer.Earlier this week, the investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller appeared to move closer to Trump.”Why is that Hillary Clintons family and Dems dealings with Russian Federation are not looked at, but my non-dealings are?” he wrote.”They made up a phony collusion with the Russians story, found zero proof, so now they go for obstruction of justice on the phony story”.This is the first time the President is taking aim at Rosenstein, a Trump nominee who previously served as the U.S. Attorney for the state of Maryland and who was widely seen as being non-partisan.”Despite the phony Witch Hunt going on in America, the economic and jobs numbers are great”.