Rosenstein plans to leave Justice Dept. shortly after Barr confirmed

GettyImages-1074464990

GettyImages-1074464990

The source said that would mean Rosenstein would remain until early March.

A source confirmed to the Washington Examiner that Rosenstein always expected to serve for about two years, and said he is likely leave after attorney general nominee Bill Barr is confirmed by the Senate.

"I can assure you he has a very high opinion of Mr Mueller and he is committed to letting Mr. Mueller finish his job", Graham said.

Last year, the White House expressed alarm over the warrant to spy on Page, saying it "raises serious concerns about the integrity of decisions made at the highest levels of the Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation to use the government's most intrusive surveillance tools against American citizens".

In May 2017, shortly after the president dumped Federal Bureau of Investigation chief James Comey, Rosenstein appointed Mueller to take over the Federal Bureau of Investigation probe of Russia's meddling in the 2016 election and possible ties between Russians and Trump associates.

But he has been a frequent target of President Donald Trump's criticism.

ABC News, citing multiple sources familiar with Rosenstein's plans, reported that he meant to leave in the coming weeks as Barr transitioned into the job. That could leave the decision in the hands of Barr, who has expansive views of executive power and wrote an unsolicited memo to Rosenstein in June 2018 knocking Mueller for probing whether the president's firing of Comey was obstruction of justice. "Once William Barr has been confirmed, he will help with the transition and step down".

William Barr, Trump's pick to replace Sessions who was sacked soon after the November midterm congressional elections, is set to appear for a confirmation hearing next week before the Senate Judiciary Committee, which must weigh his nomination before the full Senate considers his approval.

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"Much of the bad blood with Russia is caused by the Fake & Corrupt Russia Investigation, headed up by the all Democrat loyalists, or people that worked for Obama", the President tweeted in April.

Barr is known for his expansive view of executive power and had previously sent an "unsolicited memo" to Rod Rosenstein criticizing special counsel Robert Mueller's ongoing Russian Federation investigation.

"Mr. Rosenstein mentioned to him when they first met, I think, that two years would probably be enough", Graham said. "I trust his judgement to find a worthy successor to Mr. Rosenstein".

But after Mr Session was ousted in November, his replacement Matthew Whitaker took over the investigation, refusing to recuse himself despite his previous public criticism of the probe. "Who replaces him will be extremely critical". Grassley of Iowa, who is trading the Judiciary gavel for Finance, Barr moved on to visit with Sen.

The source said that Rosenstein is resigning of his own accord, and not being forced out by Trump. He added that Barr would be an "excellent attorney general when he is confirmed".

Trump has criticized Rosenstein numerous times.

Trump has denied collusion with Moscow.

The federal probe into Russian election interference has defined Rosenstein's tenure as the department's No.2.

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