Friend says Trump is considering 'terminating' Mueller

Ruddy was interviewed after visiting the White House - but not the president - earlier in the day.

The revelation came after Ruddy was at the White House on Monday for a meeting with Chief Strategist Steve Bannon. "With respect to this subject, only the president or his attorneys are authorized to comment".

Mr Mueller's appointment was initially praised by both Republicans and Democrats, but some influential conservatives have intensified their attacks, openly defending his dismissal.

The pushback also represented growing willingness among staffers to try to keep Trump from making damaging mistakes - an important change in a White House dominated by a president who often demands obeisance.

But expressions of discontent with Mueller are bubbling up nonetheless.

Rosenstein said Mueller can "only be fired for good cause", and it would be his job to put that good cause into writing.

Later, Mueller pointed to the lawyers Mueller has hired to be on his staff, some of which had made campaign contributions to Democrats.

So, of course, they would ignore Ruddy's clarification that he doesn't think Trump would actually fire Mueller.

Justice Department spokesman Ian Prior declined to comment on the possibility of Trump seeking to remove Mueller.

Anxiety about the probe - and fresh concerns about the political leanings of some of the attorneys involved - is percolating in the West Wing of the White House.

The reports follow Newsmax CEO and Trump confidante, Chris Ruddy, telling "PBS Newshour" he believes the president is considering firing Mueller.

More news: White House: Trump won't sack special counsel Robert Mueller

"While the president has the right to, he has no intention to do so", Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House deputy press secretary, said in a press briefing aboard Air Force One on Tuesday evening.

"He is being advised by many people not to do it", the source said.

Trump's allies have begun raising questions about special counsel Robert Mueller's impartiality - he's a former FBI director who has worked with fired FBI Director James Comey - and floating the idea that Trump might replace him. She then swiftly tried to back up the claims about Trump with the opinion of someone else who had hammered Mueller.

One of President Donald Trump's friends said Monday he believes the President is considering dismissing special counsel Robert Mueller, who was appointed to lead the FBI investigation into Russia's potential ties to the 2016 election.

Mueller, who preceded Comey as Federal Bureau of Investigation director, was the longest-serving director since J. Edgar Hoover.

When Comey was sacked, he was overseeing the investigation into Russian meddling into the 2016 election and potential collusion with the Trump campaign.

House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) on Tuesday joined a handful of Republicans urging conservative critics of the special counsel in charge of the Russian Federation investigation to back off.

Rosenstein would also have to meet the high standard of "good cause shown", according to University of New Hampshire legal advocacy professor Seth Abramson.

Mr Sessions recused himself from all matters concerned with the Trump-Russia investigation because of his own conversations with Russian officials during the Trump transition. Sessions has recused himself from the Russian probe, a move that gave Rosenstein the authority to appoint a special counsel. Mueller is said to be looking at whether in his request Trump obstructed justice.

"I think we should let Bob Mueller do his work and get to the bottom of it, and get to the bottom of it quickly so that he can be vindicated, get to these things", Ryan said.

Even so, Gingrich said, Trump won't seek to dismiss Mueller because he's confident the probe will conclude he's done nothing wrong.

  • Alfonso Moody