"The firing of Sessions is widely viewed as a possible attempt to obstruct the ongoing special counsel investigation being conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice and headed by former FBI director Robert Mueller", said the organizers in a release.
Whitaker lost the 2014 primary to Joni Ernst, who went on to win election to the Senate. Several senior officials said they were surprised by the criticism and believe it could potentially jeopardize his chances to remain in the post if it continues to dominate headlines. "I didn't speak to Matt Whitaker about" the Russian Federation investigation, Trump told reporters this morning, "I don't know Matt Whitaker".
As Mueller has gotten closer to the heart of the Trump family's closely guarded financial secrets, the president has become more enraged. But the end result was, by any measure, a foregone conclusion.
Sessions' decision to recuse himself infuriated Trump.
Whitaker also served on the advisory board for a patent promotion company that paid almost $26 million to settle charges that it cheated clients.
The protest was part of the nationally organized "Nobody is Above the Law" movement, which vowed to hold protests nationwide if President Donald Trump took any steps that could jeopardize special counsel Robert Mueller's Russian Federation investigation.
Speaking to reporters Friday, Trump said: "I don't know Matt Whitaker".
"He's acting, I think he'll do a very good job and we'll see what happens".
The investigation until now has been overseen by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who appointed Mueller a year ago and granted him fairly broad authority. Trump has blasted Federal Bureau of Investigation leadership as biased and said its reputation was in tatters after an Federal Bureau of Investigation agent was discovered sharing anti-Trump text messages. Sessions was accused of being involved in some way with the collusion and so he stepped away from the investigation and allowed it to be overseen by deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein.
The counselor to the president went on to give credit to Sessions for his work at the Department of Justice, including cracking down on opioid abuse as well as the MS-13 gang.
"If the president seeks to interfere in the impartial administration of justice, the Congress must stop him", Adam Schiff said. She said she called on people to contact legislators and form a public outcry about Sessions' resignation that will have to be addressed.
In an interview with The Washington Times last week, Mr. Trump said he had just wrapped up a meeting with Mr. Whitaker and others on election security at the White House.
Speaking to reporters at the White House, Trump defended his choice of Whitaker, who has been panned by critics for his past comments on the probe, saying the former US attorney had an excellent reputation and came highly recommended by former Iowa Governor Terry Branstad, who is now Trump's ambassador to China.
CNN journalist Abby Phillip asks President Donald Trump a question as he speaks with reporters before departing for France on the South Lawn of the White House, Nov. 9, 2018.