Jeff Sessions: US attorney general fired by Trump

Matthew Whitaker's politics

Matthew Whitaker's politics

The man who President Trump has nominated to temporarily replace outgoing Attorney General Jeff Sessions wrote a CNN op-ed in August, 2017, that argued special counsel Robert Mueller was coming "dangerously close" to a red line in the Russian Federation 2016 election-meddling investigation. Sessions' resignation letter has been delivered to White House chief of staff John Kelly.

Sessions' chief-of-staff, Matthew Whitaker, will be acting attorney general, Trump said on Twitter.

In his resignation letter, obtained by several media outlets and posted to Twitter, Mr Sessions makes it clear he was quitting at the president's request.

"Thx to AG Jeff Sessions for his service to our country both leading the DOJ & in the US Senate serving the ppl of Alabama I've enjoyed working with him for decades", the tweet said.

At a forum for Republican candidates for Sente in 2004, Whitaker said that he would ask judicial nominees whether they were "people of faith" in the nomination process.

Sessions' job security has always been in question.

Department veterans have expressed concerns that Trump's repeated public attacks on Sessions, the Justice Department and the FBI could cause lasting damage to federal law enforcement.

The president has repeatedly criticised Mr Sessions, a former Republican senator and early supporter of Mr Trump's longshot candidacy.

It appeared to be part of a summer 2017 campaign by Whitaker - then reportedly on the shortlist to replace Don McGahn as White House counsel - to portray himself as a hardliner on the Mueller probe.

Trump has never forgiven Sessions for that decision, which he regarded as an act of disloyalty that denied him the protection he thought he deserved from his attorney-general.

Who is the new attorney general?

Donny Deutsch and co-host Joe Scarborough were gleefully discussing that, within the next couple of months, the Mueller investigation would topple "one domino after another domino after another domino", when Mitchell burst their bubble.

The attorney general had endured more than a year of stinging and personal criticism from Trump over his recusal from the investigation into potential coordination between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign. But Sessions also thought that by staying in the job, he had protected the integrity of the investigation, the person said. "It is time for Rosenstein, who is the acting attorney general for the purposes of this investigation, to order Mueller to limit the scope of his investigation to the four corners of the order appointing him special counsel".

Whitaker will now be in control of the Mueller investigation. If Mueller gets the axe, Democrats could claim that it's obstruction of justice and impeach Trump over it.

Sessions received the request to resign from Kelly, not the President, on Wednesday morning, an administration official said.

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