Whitaker expected to oversee Mueller probe

FILE - In this April 24, 2014, file photo, then-Iowa Republican senatorial candidate and former U.S. Attorney Matt Whitaker watches before a live televised debate in Johnston, Iowa. President Donald Trump announced in a tweet that he was naming Whitaker, as acting attorney general, after Attorney General Jeff Sessions was pushed out Nov. 7, 2018, as the country's chief law enforcement officer after enduring more than a year of blistering and personal attacks from Trump over his recusal from the Russia investigation. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)

Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker is expected to oversee the special counsel's investigation into potential coordination between the president's Republican campaign and Russia now that Attorney General Jeff Sessions has resigned.

Asked Wednesday if Whitaker would take control of the probe, Justice Department spokeswoman Sarah Flores said Whitaker would be "in charge of all matters under the purview of the Department of Justice."

President Donald Trump named Whitaker as acting attorney general after Sessions resigned Wednesday. Whitaker had served as Sessions' chief of staff.

He once mused about a situation in which Trump could fire Sessions and then appoint an acting attorney general who could stifle the funding of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation.

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Trump's relationship with Sessions frayed just weeks into his tenure, when he stepped aside from the Russia investigation. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has overseen Mueller's work.

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