Donald Trump fires US Attorney General Jeff Sessions

US Attorney General Jeff Sessions, said he was resigning at the request of US President Donald Trump on Nov 7 2018

President Donald Trump named Whitaker as acting attorney general after Sessions resigned Wednesday.

When asked whether Whitaker would now assume control over the Mueller investigation, U.S. Justice Department spokesperson Sarah Flores said Whitaker would be "in charge of all matters" under the purview of the department. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said that "protecting Mueller and his investigation is paramount".

Attorney General Jeff Sessions was forced to resign Wednesday, sparking questions about the future of the Russian Federation investigation.

How could Whitaker impede Mueller without firing him?

"First of all, I know a couple of families that are going to be positively impacted by what has happened in the state Senate today", he said.

- How can the probe proceed? He added that it had "been a privilege" to work under Sessions.

Christie and Trump have been friends for years and Christie even endorsed Trump after he dropped out of the presidential race in 2016.

Rosenstein, who appointed Mueller and has overseen his probe from the beginning will stay in his post, according to the official.

There are still questions about Whitaker's ability to take over as Attorney General, due to the fact that he served as Session's chief of staff and was not confirmed by the Senate. He has previously said that he saw no basis for firing Mueller.

In July 2017, he said during an interview on CNN that he could envision a scenario under which a temporary attorney general doesn't fire Mueller but rather "just reduces his budget to so low that his investigations grinds to nearly a halt".

Whitaker, who had a stint as a legal commentator for CNN, has been vocal in his criticism of Mueller's investigation and its scope.

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"Donald Trump may think he has the power to hire and fire whomever he pleases, but he can not take such action if it is determined that it is for the purposes of subverting the rule of law and obstructing justice", said the congressman.

Chris Christie is being considered to replace Jeff Sessions as attorney general, two sources familiar with the matter tell CBS News.

"There are many people in contention for that position just because there are many qualified people who would like to do it", Kellyanne Conway told reporters at the White House on Thursday.

Gonzales said if a decision is made to curtail or end the Mueller probe, that shouldn't be made by the acting attorney general, but someone within the normal lines of the chain of authority, either the deputy attorney general or the solicitor general. But the former federal prosecutor went from being one of Trump's closest campaign advisers to an outcast.

Any action by Mr Whitaker could potentially be challenged under the Vacancies Reform Act Trump used to appoint his acting attorney general.

High-ranking Democrats reacted with alarm, calling for Mr Whitaker to recuse himself from the investigation.

"Interference with the special counsel's investigation would cause a constitutional crisis and undermine the rule of law".

"I look forward to working with President Trump to find a confirmable, worthy successor so that we can start a new chapter at the Department of Justice and deal with both the opportunities and challenges our nation faces", he said in a statement online.

Trump has long expressed frustration with Sessions over his recusal from the Justice Department's Russian Federation investigation.

Trump blamed Sessions for recusing himself from overseeing the investigation in its early stages, leading to the appointment of a special counsel.

-With assistance from Steven T. Dennis.

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