Deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein reportedly personally approved the Monday morning FBI raids on President Donald Trump’s personal attorney Michael Cohen’s home and offices.
The New York Times reported that the FBI seized emails, tax documents and records, some of which are related to Cohen’s $130,000 payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels in the days before the November 2016 presidential election.
According to The Times, a referral from special counsel Robert Mueller proceeded Rosenstein’s decision to green light the raid.
The Justice Department obtained a search warrant from a federal judge in New York, which would have required prosecutors to argue the FBI would likely find evidence of criminal activity.
A source told The Times that the documents identified in the warrant date back years.
Trump took the DOJ to task on Monday night during a meeting at the White House with his national security team.
He noted that Rosenstein approved a renewal of a FISA warrant, which authorized the FBI to continue surveil Trump campaign associate Carter Page during the early months of the new administration in 2017.
Asked by a reporter if Rosenstein would keep his job, Trump did not respond
However, the president did voice his frustration with Sessions and Mueller.
“(Sessions) should have certainly let us know if he was going to recuse himself, and we would have put a different attorney general in,” Trump said. “So he made what I consider to be a very terrible mistake for the country, but you’ll figure that out.”
Sessions’ recusal led to Rosenstein taking over Russia investigation, which resulted in his appointment of Mueller as special counsel.
The president said the Mueller investigation is “an attack on our country in a true sense. It’s an attack on what we all stand for” and called Mueller’s actions against Cohen “a disgrace.”
“So they find no collusion, and then they go from there and they say, ‘Well, let’s keep going,’” Trump stated. “And they raid an office of a personal attorney early in the morning and I think it’s a disgrace.”
He tweeted on Tuesday, “Attorney-client privilege is dead!”
Asked whether he will fire Mueller, the president replied, “We’ll see what happens,” and, “Many people have said you should fire him.”
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