Vermont senators praise special prosecutor appointment

"The general consensus is it was a good decision to pick a special counsel", said South Carolina Republican Lindsey Graham, saying most lawmakers have "a lot of confidence in Mr. Mueller", who ran the Federal Bureau of Investigation for 12 years.

Trump undercut that timeline in an interview last week, but in a news conference on Thursday, he said he relied on Rosenstein's recommendation to make his decision.

But unlike the usual suspects on the left, I never believed there was any collusion between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign.

"I think that's an open question", said Democratic Senator Chris Coons of DE when asked whether Comey would appear before Congress, adding that it remained to be seen "how ongoing congressional investigations will be coordinated with the special counsel".

"Public access to what happened is going to be very limited now because of special counsel", said Sen.

The New York Times reported on Thursday that Trump called Comey weeks after he took office on January 20 and asked him when federal authorities were going to say Trump was not under investigation. Trump wrote, his anger boiling over.

He later, however, struck a different tone via Twitter, asking why there was never a special counsel appointed to investigate "all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration".

United States intelligence suspect that Russian President Vladimir Putin orchestrated a sweeping campaign to tilt last November´s vote in the Republican´s favor.

Flynn is accused of misleading Vice President Mike Pence about conversations he had with the Russian ambassador during the Trump transition.

"I think it divides the country", he told a joint press conference with Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos. "I was stunned when President Trump suggested that he might have tapes of his meetings with director Comey, because those would become the subject of subpoenas". Langevin said reports that President Donald Trump tried to stop an investigation into former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, a Rhode Island native, was proof of the administration's inability to oversee a "fair and impartial investigation".

Repeating his assertion that Comey "was very unpopular with most people", Trump said he was dismissed over inaccurate testimony delivered before Congress as well as his faulty decision making during the presidential campaign. "I think it divides the country".

"Look at the way I've been treated lately, especially by the media".

At the start of another roller-coaster week in Washington, Trump was accused of divulging highly sensitive classified information gleaned by Israeli spies to visiting Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

President Donald Trump turned the words "You're fired!" into a national catchphrase on The Apprentice. Right now, everything from the White House needs to remain airtight. What did they have to say?

Rosenstein, who at his confirmation hearing would not commit to a special counsel appointment and who inherited the probe following Sessions' recusal, seemed to acknowledge the public outcry by calling Mueller's selection "necessary in order for the American people to have full confidence in the outcome".

The senator said counterintelligence investigations, such as the ones being conducted by Congress, do not need a special prosecutor, but "a criminal investigation might". But if he stays quiet and the White House entrusts a core group to be responsible for cooperation with the special counsel, then Republicans may have a fighting chance of getting on with legislating and advancing a conservative agenda.

Mr Rosenstein briefed senators on Thursday, but made no public comments. "We can go back to dealing with legislative matters that affect the American people".

John Feehery, a Republican consultant and former congressional spokesman, said most of Trump's voters probably won't care.

US stocks rallied back on Thursday after seeing their biggest drop in eight months the previous day on worries that the political turmoil could sideline Trump initiatives such as tax cuts that investors see as favouring economic growth. Even his enemies, Trump declared, recognize his innocence.

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