Will Rod Rosenstein Be Fired Or Quit? His Fate Will Be Decided At Thursday Meeting With Donald Trump
Although Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein dodge the bullet Monday, the DOJ is still in danger of losing its second in command.
Rosenstein, who is in charge of special counsel Robert Mueller‘s investigation into Russian meddling during the 2016 election, will meet with President Donald Trump on Thursday to discuss the allegations that Rosenstein secretly suggested wearing a wire to record the president and discussed invoking the 25th Amendment in order to remove Trump from office.
“We’ll be meeting at the White House, and we’ll be determining what’s going on. We want to have transparency, we want to have openness and I look forward to meeting with Rod at that time,” Trump said, speaking from the United Nations Headquarters in New York.
Rosenstein fervently denied the accusations, calling them and the wider story “inaccurate and factually incorrect.”
Prior to the president’s announcement, there was significant confusion regarding the deputy attorney general’s status in the Trump administration. Rosenstein had met with Chief of Staff Gen. John Kelly on Friday, just hours after the reports written by the New York Times and others were published to offer his resignation.
But Rosenstein was back in his office immediately after his one-on-one with Kelly. On Monday Kelly told associates that he had in fact accepted the deputy attorney general’s resignation.
Trump’s thoughts on the matter remain unclear. Reports indicate that in the hours following the story breaking, Trump asked his associates whether he should fire Rosenstein. Other reports peg the president as skeptical of the article, doubting it due to its connection with former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.
Rosenstein has often been at odds with the president, and as the overseer of the Russia investigation, he’s been in the crosshairs of the president’s twitter based ire on more than one occasion.
A supposed Rosenstein departure has been likened by some like Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) to a “slow-motion Saturday Night Massacre.”
Conservatives, like Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), have implied that the White House is making the right decision by moving against Rosenstein.
“Whether or not the latest reports on Rod Rosenstein are true, one thing is clear: what is happening at the Department of Justice is a travesty,” said Meadows.