Who is Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein?
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Summary: Rod Rosenstein is a man known for wanting “neutral ground,” according to The New York Times.

Rod J. Rosenstein previously worked as the United States attorney in Maryland before he became the deputy attorney general last month. During his short period at his new job, he has already appointed Robert Mueller as special counsel to the FBI’s investigation into President Donald Trump’s alleged ties with Russia; and the appointment has been met with overall respect from both Democrats and Republicans.


While Rosenstein has been praised for seeking “neutral ground,” according to The New York Times, he has also been met with controversy because he recommended the termination of FBI Director, James Comey, who had been in charge of the Trump-Russia probe before he was fired earlier this month. According to The Atlantic, Rosenstein, 52, composed a three-page memo to Trump, stating that Comey’s dismissal was needed to “regain public and congressional trust.” Trump apparently took this memo into account, and the decision to fire Comey was overwhelmingly met with ire from liberals and made it appear that Trump was letting the now-ex FBI Director go as a cover up for his alleged crimes.

Rosenstein’s role in Comey’s firing and the finding of his replacement have led the public to wonder–who is Rod Rosenstein? After all, before this month, he had been under the radar while simultaneously developing an impressive resume.

According to The Atlantic, the deputy attorney general is known for his apolitical views, and he appears “meek” and is “mild in tone.” However, those who know him well told The New York Times that Rosenstein is actually a force that gets things done–just out of the spotlight.

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After attending the University of Pennsylvania for his bachelor’s degree and earning his J.D. from Harvard Law, Rosenstein served at the DOJ under five presidents, both Republican and Democrats before he became Maryland’s U.S. Attorney.

On April 26, Rosenstein was sworn in as the number two official of the Department of Justice, and at an interfaith center in Columbia, MD, he joked about the job’s high burnout rate, according to The New York Times. 

Rosenstein’s friend, James M. Trusty, told The New York Times that Rosenstein was aware of how tough his new post will be.

“He was happy, but he was also cleareyed about what he was getting himself into,” said Trusty. “He knew going in that this is kind of a meat grinder, that nobody comes out of the deputy attorney general position without aging.”

Rosenstein was confirmed 94 to 6 by the Senate, and his addition to the Department of Justice has come at a time when the department is lacking U.S. attorneys because of a mass firing before his arrival and is in the middle of a tense investigation into the alleged corruption of our country’s 45th president.

Rosenstein hired Mueller, the former FBI Director under George W. Bush, to oversee the investigation that Comey had exited, and according to The New York Times, he gave minimal notice about the appointment to Trump or his direct boss, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who recused himself from any Trump and Russia-related investigations.

Rosenstein’s former colleague Andrew C. White told The New York Times that it was “symbolic” with how quickly Rosenstein took the lead with appointing Mueller.

“It’s symbolic,” White said. “Because the record was set straight, taken care of quietly and out of the spotlight. It’s classic Rod.”

Photo courtesy of NBC News

What do you think of the hiring of Rod Rosenstein? Let us know in the comments below.



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