Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-KY) office announced Monday that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is scheduled to return to Capitol Hill on Thursday and talk to all 100 senators in a classified, closed-door briefing about last week’s ouster of FBI Director James Comey.
Rosenstein wrote a memo that was sharply critical of Comey’s handling of the bureau’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private emails server, and the White House initially pointed to that recommendation as the main driver for the decision to terminate Comey. Later, President Trump admitted in a TV interview that he had already decided to can Comey before reading Rosenstein’s justification.
Since then, the deputy attorney general has come under scrutiny from Democrats, including those who supported his confirmation.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) released a statement saying he hopes Democratic and Republican senators will use the Rosenstein briefing “to seek the full truth regarding Director Comey’s firing, to press the Deputy Attorney General to make way for a special prosecutor, and to ensure the administration will preserve and make public any audio recordings of conversations between the President and the former director.”
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is demanding a similar briefing from Rosenstein for all 400-plus House members.
“In the days since the firing of Director Comey, there has been a distressing disparity of information being made available to the Senate but not to the House,” she wrote in a public letter to House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI). “The people’s representatives on both sides of the Capitol must have the opportunity to hear from and interrogate the key figures in the FBI director’s firing.”
Alice Ollstein is a reporter at Talking Points Memo, covering national politics. She graduated from Oberlin College in 2010 and has been reporting in DC ever since, covering the Supreme Court, Congress and national elections for TV, radio, print, and online outlets. Her work has aired on Free Speech Radio News, All Things Considered, Channel News Asia, and Telesur, and her writing has been published by The Atlantic, La Opinión, and The Hill Rag. She was elected in 2016 as an at-large board member of the DC Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. Alice grew up in Santa Monica, California and began working for local newspapers in her early teens.