Protesters march in Seattle to defend Mueller investigation

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Fears for Russia probe as Trump fires Jeff Sessions

About 40 sign-carrying people protested Thursday against President Donald Trump's ouster of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and the threat they said it poses to special counsel Robert Mueller's Russian Federation investigation.

Democrats urged the passing of a bill that would protect special counsel Robert Mueller as he continues his probe into potential Russian collusion with the Trump campaign in the 2016 election.

A federal appeals court that is weighing a legal challenge to Special Counsel Robert Mueller's authority said Friday it wanted to know whether the sudden ouster of Attorney General Jeff Sessions could impact or change the outcome of how it should rule.

Democrats have slammed Whitaker's appointment to replace Sessions, arguing that Trump is trying to undermine Mueller and demanding that Whitaker recuse himself from supervising the Mueller investigation due to his writings and public comments attacking the investigation.

"I think it seems wildly inappropriate to most of us that the president would appoint someone who has such a strong opinion on an investigation on him", said Mindie Riley, a Bethlehem resident who helped organize the rally. The president said critics are only objecting to Mr. Whitaker now because he appointed him.

US media reported that Trump had asked White House Chief of Staff John Kelly to ask Sessions to resign, prompting Sessions to submit the letter. Whitaker has been publicly critical of the investigation in the past.

Thursday's letter to the Justice Department was signed by Oregon's Ellen Rosenblum and Washington's Bob Ferguson and their colleagues in Hawaii, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Vermont, Rhode Island, North Carolina, California, New Jersey, Minnesota, Illinois, Delaware, New York and MA.

Whitaker has taken over from Jeff Sessions, who resigned Wednesday after months of pressure from President Trump to do so.

The president said he is also looking at "other people" to nominate for the permanent position of Attorney General, and will make a decision in the next few weeks. "But I didn't know Matt Whitaker", Trump told reporters on the south White House lawn before departing for an global gathering in Paris.

But as special counsel, Mueller didn't require Senate confirmation. It's the closest to an unvarnished opinion on the Mueller Investigation from Whitaker that we're likely to get.

"It's not going to come up because it isn't necessary", the Kentucky Republican told reporters.

"The firing of Attorney General Jeff Sessions would be one step short of the break glass moment", the organizers wrote before that became a reality on Wednesday.

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