russia-investigation

Trump: Missing Saudi Journalist Perhaps Slain by ‘Rogue Killers’
President says he’s dispatching Secretary of State Pompeo to discuss disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi

Demonstrators hold posters of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi during a protest organized by members of the Turkish-Arabic Media Association at the entrance to Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, last week. (Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump appears ready to believe the Saudi king’s rejection of charges he had a Washington Post journalist killed, using language almost identical to his statements that he believed Russian President Vladimir Putin’s denials of election meddling.

“Just spoke to the King of Saudi Arabia who denies any knowledge of whatever may have happened ‘to our Saudi Arabian citizen,’” Trump tweeted Monday morning.

Trump Keeps Rosenstein Despite Reported Recording, Removal Talk
‘I have a very good relationship’ with deputy AG, president says

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein leaves the Capitol on May 19, 2017. He is still in his job despite reported remarks about secretly recording President Trump with the goal of removing him from office. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Rod Rosenstein, despite reports he discussed secretly taping President Donald Trump with the goal or removing him from office, is still the deputy attorney general after the two men spoke aboard Air Force One.

The senior Justice Department official joined Trump on the executive jet on the way to Orlando, where the president is addressing law enforcement officials. White House spokesman Hogan Gidley told reporters traveling with Trump that the duo talked for 30 minutes during the flight to Florida.

President Donald Trump and Rod Rosenstein to Discuss DOJ Official’s Future Monday
Meeting was delayed by contentious Kavanaugh hearing

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and President Donald Trump reportedly were expected to speak about his future on Monday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated 12:19 p.m.Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and President Donald Trump were expected to discuss the Justice Department official’s future during the president’s  trip to Orlando on Monday. 

Trump told reporters the deputy AG was waiting on the presidential jet as he left the White House for remarks in Florida to law enforcement officials. He also signaled he did not plan to terminate Rosenstein on Monday.

Witnesses Increasingly Wary of House GOP Probe into DOJ, FBI Bias
Pattern of broken confidentiality agreements leaves interviewees vulnerable to selective leaks, critics say

Former FBI Director James Comey turned down a request for a private meeting with the House task force looking into potential anti-Trump bias in federal law enforcement agencies, but would “welcome the opportunity to testify at a public hearing,” his attorney wrote. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Witnesses for the House GOP’s investigation into potential bias at the top levels of U.S. law enforcement have grown increasingly dubious of the probe — to the point that some actually prefer public hearings to private ones.

Case in point: Former FBI Director James Comey on Monday declined to submit to a private interview with members of the House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform panels, who comprise a joint “task force” examining whether “decisions made and not made” by the Justice Department and FBI during the 2016 Clinton email and Trump-Russia investigations were tinged with anti-Republican bias.

Domestic Battles Overtake Trump’s Third Day With Foreign Leaders
Trump in fighting mood as Thursday could shape his presidency

President Donald Trump leaves after chairing a United Nations Security Council meeting Wednesday. He sparred with attorney Michael Avenatti most of the day. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

No one laughed on Wednesday.

But there was plenty of anger, accusations and acrimony during President Donald Trump’s third wild and tumultuous day at a United Nations conference in New York. The White House planned to focus on combating Iran’s nuclear ambitions, warning that China allegedly is trying to interfere in the midterm elections, and raising hopes that a nuclear disarmament deal with North Korea could be within reach.

President Trump Now Says He Would Prefer to Keep Rod Rosenstein at DOJ
Deputy attorney general’s fate in the air after report he wanted to invoke 25th amendment

President Donald Trump now sys he would prefer to keep Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and may delay a meeting planned on Thursday about his future. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump said he would prefer to keep Rod Rosenstein as deputy attorney general, announcing he may delay a planned Thursday meeting about the Justice Department official’s future.

“He said he did not say it. He said he does not believe it,” Trump said of reported Rosenstein comments to colleagues last year about secretly recording Trump with the goal of removing him via the 25th Amendment.

Thursday Could Be Most Consequential Day of Trump’s Tumultuous Tenure
Kavanaugh and accuser face senators as president meets with Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein

President Donald Trump speaks at the United Nations on Monday. When he returns to Washington, a big day awaits him on Thursday. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

ANALYSIS — Circumstance, confusion and chaos have collided to ensure Thursday will be one of the most consequential — and perhaps the most by a wide margin — days of the tumultuous Trump presidency.

Washington has rarely seen the kind of spectacle ahead in just a few days, and the inevitable ramifications will trigger ripple waves that will be immediately apparent but not fully known until voters head to the ballot box on Nov. 6. For President Donald Trump, the already high stakes seem to only grow by the day.

Amid Reports of Rosenstein Firing, Democrats Want Vote to Protect Mueller
One Democrat suggest Judiciary hearing on Trump obstructing justice, GOP member wants Rosenstein to testify

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein arrives in the Capitol for a meeting with a bipartisan group of lawmakers on the Russia investigation in May 24. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

As news broke Monday morning that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein was resigning or expecting to be fired, Democrats were quick to call for congressional action to protect the special counsel investigation that Rosenstein has managed. 

“With Rosenstein’s departure there is one less barrier protecting the Mueller investigation from President [Donald] Trump’s interference,” Florida Rep. Val Demings said in a statement. “Congress must take immediate steps to uphold the Constitution and the rule of law — which protects all of us — by shielding the Mueller investigation against President Trump’s obstruction."

Meet Noel Francisco, the Conservative Supreme Court Litigator Who Could Take Over Oversight of Mueller Investigation
Solicitor general is the next in line if Rod Rosenstein is ousted

From left to right, Justice Department nominees Noel Francisco to be solicitor general, Makan Delrahim to be an assistant attorney general in the Antitrust Division, and Steven Engel to be an assistant attorney general in the Office of Legal Counsel, raise their right hands as they are sworn in during their Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill, on May 10, 2017. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

If Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is ousted Monday, oversight of the special counsel investigation of Russian activity will most likely fall to Solicitor General Noel J. Francisco.

Francisco, a former partner at the Jones Day law firm in Washington, is the next Senate-confirmed Justice Department official in line to oversee the probe led by Special Counsel Robert S. Muller. However, there is an open question about Francisco’s role in such a situation, because of a possible conflict dating from his time at Jones Day. 

White House: Rosenstein to Meet With Trump on Thursday
News reports had embattled DOJ deputy resigning, about to be fired, or resigning before he was fired

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein had reportedly discussed using the 25th Amendment to oust President Donald Trump, according to a New York Times report last week. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

President Donald Trump and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein will meet Thursday in Washington to discuss his future, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement.

“At the request of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, he and President Trump had an extended conversation to discuss the recent news stories. Because the President is at the United Nations General Assembly and has a full schedule with leaders from around the world, they will meet on Thursday when the President returns to Washington, D.C.,” Sanders said. That could make Thursday quite a busy one, with the Senate Judiciary Committee set to hear from Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and the woman who has accused him of sexual assault, Christine Blasey Ford.