Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said that he has not seen a "good cause" to fire special counsel Robert Mueller while testifying before a Senate Appropriations subcommittee on Tuesday.
News outlets have been speculating that Mueller would be fired after NewsMax Media CEO Chris Ruddy told PBS during an interview Monday that President Donald Trump was "considering" firing the special counsel.
Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D., N.H.) asked Rosenstein about these reports before reading several regulations for when a special prosecutor can be removed from their position. She went on to clarify that Rosenstein had the hiring and firing power, as Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself in March from anything related to the Russia investigation.
"At this point have you seen any evidence of ‘good cause' for firing of special counsel Mueller?" Shaheen asked.
"No, I have not," Rosenstein said.
Shaheen then asked Rosenstein whether he had given Mueller full independence from the Justice Department to conduct the investigation.
"I'm confident that he has full confidence," Rosenstein said.
Shaheen also asked whether there was a record that gives Mueller full independence.
"Yes, senator. It's done in the order, which I believe was issued on May 17, and the order references the regulation for which you read, and so that is the source of his authority," Rosenstein said.