Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein says he has seen no evidence of good cause to fire the special prosecutor overseeing the Russia investigation.
The comment came in response to questions from Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen. She asked about news reports suggesting that President Donald Trump was already thinking about "terminating" Robert Mueller from his position as special counsel. She asked whether he has seen "any evidence of good cause" to fire Mueller. Rosenstein responded: "No I have not."
Rosenstein says the attorney general would be the only one who could fire Mueller. And since Attorney General Jeff Sessions has recused himself from the investigation, Rosenstein is acting in that capacity.
He says he is confident that Mueller will have "the full independence he needs" to investigate thoroughly.
Earlier, House Speaker Paul Ryan said the White House and President Donald Trump should let the special counsel's investigation continue, and await vindication.
Ryan told reporters Tuesday: "The best advice would be to let Robert Mueller do his job."
The Wisconsin Republican commented in response to a Trump friend, Chris Ruddy, the CEO of Newsmax, who suggested Monday night that the president was already thinking about "terminating" Mueller from his position as special counsel. Such a move would create a firestorm coming weeks after Trump fired FBI Director James Comey.
Ryan said the smartest thing for the president to do would be to let the investigation continue and be vindicated.
Said Ryan: "I know Bob Mueller. I have confidence in Bob Mueller."