That explanation lasted until the next day, when Donald Trump agreed to give an interview and immediately firebombed his own PR team by admitting that he had chose to fire Comey before ever bringing Rosenstein and AG Jefferson Sessions to the White House.
A spokeswoman for House Speaker Paul Ryan said he would not discuss information provided in classified briefings and said the House Oversight committee had already asked for documents related to Comey's firing.
Addressing a report that President Donald Trump told Russian officials in the Oval Office that, by firing FBI Director James Comey, pressure was taken off of him in his dealings with Russia, Press Secretary Sean Spicer defended his boss.
While there has been a loud public debate in recent days over the question of whether the president might have attempted to obstruct justice in his private dealings with FBI Director James Comey, who Trump fired last week, people familiar with the matter said investigators on the case are more focused on Russian influence operations and possible financial crimes.
This news after reports Friday in the New York Times and the Washington Post about the fallout from Trump's firing of Comey, as well as the inquiry into Russia's role in the 2016 election and possible collusion with the Trump campaign.
"I thought the July 5 press conference was profoundly wrong and unfair both to the Department of Justice and Secretary Clinton", said Rosenstein, adding, "It violated deeply ingrained rules and traditions, and it guaranteed that some people would accuse the Federal Bureau of Investigation of interfering in the election".
Mr. Trump added, "I'm not under investigation".
During a press conference on Thursday, Trump denied asking Comey to end the investigation into Flynn.
President calls independent investigation into Russia ties a 'witch hunt'
Senator Claire McCaskill said Rosenstein testified that he knew Comey was going to be removed prior to him writing his memo. And of course, as you well know , Trump later admitted that he was going to fire Comey regardless of what anyone said.
It's unclear how the White House believes Comey politicized the case, but he testified publicly that the probe was ongoing a week before he was sacked. That was two days after Rosenstein named Mueller as a special counsel to investigate possible coordination between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign to influence the 2016 presidential election.
Trump on Thursday slapped down the accusations against him and said he was the victim of the "greatest witch hunt" in American political history. But lawmakers at both congressional sessions expressed frustration that Rosenstein would say little in answer to their questions about his actions - or others' - before Comey's firing.
Michael Allen, a former senior director on the National Security Council in the George W. Bush White House, said that transcripts of meetings with foreign leaders usually "are treated like the crown jewels". Rosenstein was picked by Trump to be deputy attorney general in mid-January.
"There was considerable frustration in the room", said Rep. Seth Moulton, D-Mass., an Iraq war veteran and member of the Armed Services Committee.
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein wrote the memo the president initially cited as justification for firing FBI Director James Comey. "I don't think (Rosenstein) did a lot to bolster our confidence in him today". I stand by it, ' Rosenstein told lawmakers in two closed-door meetings Friday. "My memorandum is not a statement of reasons to justify a for-cause termination".
Trump added, "I'm not under investigation". Rosenstein denounced that as "profoundly wrong and unfair".
But Trump's conversations with Comey and the Russians were part of a pattern that could open him up to charges of obstruction of justice, experts say. The United States government officially announced past year that Russian Federation had meddled in the 2016 election.
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