Republicans launch bid to impeach US deputy attorney general

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Republicans have launched a bid to remove the Department of Justice official overseeing the Russia inquiry dogging Donald Trump’s presidency.

House of Representatives conservatives has filed articles of impeachment in an effort to oust Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

The articles were introduced by Representatives Mark Meadows and Jim Jordan, who accuse him of stonewalling their requests for information.

Mr. Rosenstein denies the accusations.

The articles of impeachment, which were filed on Wednesday evening, criticise Mr. Rosenstein for allegedly failing to comply with requests for documents relating to special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russia.

“Rod Rosenstein has been in charge of the Department of Justice as the agency has made every effort to obstruct legitimate attempts of congressional oversight,” Mr. Meadows said in a statement.

Mr. Rosenstein has overseen the investigation since Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself last year.

Impeachment would have to be approved by a majority in the House and backed by two-thirds of the US Senate to convict Mr. Rosenstein, which makes the plan a long shot.

Who is Rod Rosenstein?

Within weeks of becoming deputy attorney general in April 2017, Mr. Rosenstein found himself in controversy after a memo he wrote was cited as the reason for President Trump’s decision to fire FBI chief James Comey, who was investigating Russia’s alleged interference in the 2016 US elections.

Earlier this month, the Department of Justice charged 12 Russian intelligence officers with hacking Democratic officials during the 2016 vote.

Although Mr. Rosenstein has said there is no evidence they “altered the vote count or changed any election result”, the announcement came just before Mr. Trump’s controversial summit with President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki.

 

Source: BBC

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