Sessions receives round of applause in DOJ exit

Sessions receives round of applause in DOJ exit
© Stefani Reynolds

Outgoing Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsPress: Mueller closes in on Trump Mueller's findings don't matter The Hill's Morning Report — Trump shakes up staff with eye on 2020, Mueller probe MORE received applause from members of the Justice Department while leaving the building on Wednesday evening.

Sessions was shown shaking hands with his chief of staff Matthew Whitaker, who is slated to replace him as acting attorney general, in his publicized exit.

Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod Jay RosensteinMueller’s real challenge Graham vows to push Trump’s AG pick through Judiciary Committee House GOP set to grill Comey MORE and other top Justice Department officials were also on hand to salute the departing attorney general.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpHouse Republicans move to block Yemen war-powers votes for rest of Congress Trump says he's considering 10 to 12 contenders for chief of staff Michael Flynn asks judge to spare him from jail time MORE earlier Wednesday ousted Sessions as his attorney general, after more than a year criticizing Sessions's decision to recuse himself in the federal Russia probe.

ADVERTISEMENT

Sessions agreed to resign at Trump’s request, according to a copy of his resignation letter obtained by The Hill.

“I came to work at the Department of Justice every day determined to do my duty and serve my country,” Sessions wrote. “I have done so to the best of my ability, working to support the fundamental legal processes that are the foundation of justice.”

Trump announced in a tweet that Whitaker would replace Sessions as acting attorney general until a permanent replacement is confirmed by the Senate.

The Justice Department later confirmed that Whitaker, a GOP loyalist who served as U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Iowa, would take over oversight of special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE's probe, which Rosenstein had watched over since Sessions's recusal last year.