Meadows calls on Rosenstein to resign 'immediately'

House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) on Thursday called on Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to resign "immediately."

“I think at this particular point, Rod RosensteinRod Jay RosensteinMueller: Whitaker appointment has 'no effect' on ongoing legal challenge Senate Dems sue to block Whitaker from serving as attorney general Mueller could turn easy Trump answers into difficult situation MORE’s priorities are misplaced. His unwillingness to come before Congress and allow us to conduct proper congressional oversight, along with the other information that we’ve learned over the last week or so, would indicate that Rosenstein has not displayed the candor of which would support one’s theory of actually believing that he has been open and honest in all regards," Meadows told reporters.

"So with that, I think that it’s time that Rod Rosenstein steps down. He should do so immediately and in doing that, I think it would serve the country well, it would serve this president well," he added.

ADVERTISEMENT

The comments marked Meadows's most explicit call yet for Rosenstein's resignation. House Freedom Caucus members had previously said Rosenstein should either testify before Congress or resign from his post.

Rosenstein, the DOJ's No. 2 official, oversees special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE's investigation into Russia's election interference. Conservatives, particularly the Freedom Caucus, have criticized the investigation and called it biased against President TrumpDonald John TrumpPaul Ryan defends Navy admiral after Trump's criticism Trump discussing visit overseas to troops following criticism: report Retired Army General: Trump is ‘acting like an 8th grader’ in attacking ex-Navy SEAL who led bin Laden operation MORE.

Conservative lawmakers have also been seeking to ask Rosenstein about a report that he had considered wearing a wire to record Trump and suggested invoking the 25th Amendment. Those lawmakers have hoped Rosenstein would testify this month, but he hasn't yet. 

Rep. Jim JordanJames (Jim) Daniel JordanRep. Mike Johnson wins race for RSC chairman Election Countdown: Florida Senate race heads to hand recount | Dem flips Maine House seat | New 2020 trend - the 'friend-raiser' | Ad war intensifies in Mississippi runoff | Blue wave batters California GOP Heads up, GOP: Elections have consequences MORE (R-Ohio), another member of the Freedom Caucus forthright in sharp criticism of Rosenstein, on Thursday criticized Rosenstein for giving an interview to The Wall Street Journal but not testifying before Congress.

Rosenstein told the newspaper on Wednesday that Mueller's investigation is "appropriate and independent."

"Rosenstein interviews with @WSJ where he says Mueller investigation is 'appropriate and independent.' Translation—there’s time for media spin to justify Mueller probe but no time to answer questions from Congress about his statement on recording the President," Jordan tweeted.

Olivia Beavers contributed to this report