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Senate votes to confirm Rosenstein as deputy attorney general

27 April 2017

The Senate approved Attorney General Jeff Sessions' second-in-command on Tuesday, confirming Maryland U.S. Attorney Rod Rosenstein as the deputy attorney general in bipartisan fashion.

He easily passed a 94-6 confirmation vote in the Senate Tuesday.

Top Democrats, including Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer of NY and Richard Durbin of IL, voted to confirm Rosenstein even though they, too, want a special counsel. Rosenstein has said he will make that determination once fully briefed on the status of the investigations.

Rosenstein has spent almost 12 years serving as Maryland's top federal prosecutor. Rosenstein will now decide whether to appoint an independent prosecutor in that matter.

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Rosenstein, first appointed to the Maryland post by President George W. Bush in 2005, was nominated to his new job by President Donald Trump. The Senate voted unanimously in 2005 to confirm his nomination as US attorney. The moment Rosenstein is sworn in, that probe falls to him.

A Harvard-trained lawyer who lives in Bethesda, Rosenstein prosecuted Black Guerrilla Family gang members, inmates and corrections officers who orchestrated a massive contraband smuggling scheme inside the Baltimore City Detention Center in 2013.

While most Democrats voted for Rosenstein, Senator Richard Blumenthal of CT opposed the nominee because he didn't commit during the confirmation process to appoint a special counsel.

US intelligence agencies have found that Russian Federation hacked into Democratic emails and leaked them previous year in an effort to hurt Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and ultimately to help elect Trump. Hundreds of political appointments in the Trump administration remain unfilled.

Senate votes to confirm Rosenstein as deputy attorney general