Democrats Slam Trump's Criticism of Stepped-up Russia Probe

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Suspicions that the White House may have tried to influence the Justice Department's own investigation of the Russian matter, which the FBI began past year, arose when Trump fired FBI Director James Comey a week ago.

Despite the appointment of a special prosecutor, lawmakers say congressional investigations will still continue into possible Trump campaign ties with Russian Federation.

The committee is one of several on Capitol Hill investigating possible collusion between Russian Federation and President Donald Trump's 2016 campaign.

According to a person close to the White House, Rosenstein was upset about the narrative that emerged from the White House the evening of May 9. "Russia is fine." On whether the questions surrounding Russian Federation and his campaign were divisive, Trump added: "I think it divides the country".

But a New York Times report published this afternoon has uncovered an entirely new reason last week's White House chat is turning into one of the most consequential conversations of Trump's young presidency.

"You just look at his [Comey's] actions in the [Hillary] Clinton case, where he made himself the central player when there was no reason for him to be the central player", Miller said. "I'm fine with whatever people want to do, but we have to get back to running this country really, really well". The history of partisanship in recent congressional investigations is simply too great - up to and including Rep. Devin Nunes' cartoonish rush to the White House to share revelations he had gotten the day before on a visit to the White House - and the president's willingness to meddle is too apparent.

One senior White House official who was present when Trump was informed of the Justice Department's decision to appoint Robert Mueller, a former prosecutor who served as the Federal Bureau of Investigation director from 2001 to 2013, as special counsel described Mr Trump as "unbelievably calm and measured".

A special counsel is empowered to conduct the investigation independent of the Justice Department hierarchy, with a dedicated staff of his choosing.

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CNN Legal Analyst Jeffrey Toobin said, "This is the single most respected figure in American law enforcement". The information comes from a memo allegedly authored by Comey in which he details a private, Oval Office conversation with the president.

"With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special counsel appointed!" he added later, without providing examples.

Trump is leaving today for his first foreign trip, to the Mideast and beyond, which aides hope can have the effect of refocusing a White House in disarray.

"He's a good guy, a good pick", Graham said of Mueller.

South Carolina Sen. Lindsay Graham took it a step further, saying that the Justice Department's look into the Trump campaign's possible Russian Federation ties is "now considered a criminal investigation".

The comment did not sit well with Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal.

"The Intelligence Committee in the Senate has to continue its work, and it should continue full throttle ahead", Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said after the briefing. "I now have significantly greater confidence that the investigation will follow the facts wherever they lead". If the decision were based on Comey's refusal to "let go" of some criminal investigation of Mr. Flynn in the intervening three months, that could potentially constitute obstruction of justice.

"No, no. Next question", he said, speaking at a press conference with the Colombian president.

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