Trump asked deputy attorney general if he was part of his team: Source

PHOTO: Rod Rosenstein, listens during his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Washington, March 7, 2017. President Donald Trump makes remarks in the Oval Office prior to signing the bipartisan Interdict Act, Jan. 10, 2018.PlayAP/Getty Images
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A source familiar with the matter confirms that during a meeting with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in December, President Donald Trump asked Rosenstein about the direction of the FBI's Russia investigation and asked Rosenstein whether the deputy attorney general was part of Trump's team.

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Rosenstein seemed surprised by the questions, the source confirmed.

CNN, which first reported the story, said the December meeting occurred as Rosenstein prepared to testify before the House Judiciary Committee.

PHOTO: Deputy U.S. Attorney General Rod Rosenstein testifies to the House Judiciary Committee hearing on oversight of the Justice Department on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., Dec.r 13, 2017. Joshua Roberts/Reuters
Deputy U.S. Attorney General Rod Rosenstein testifies to the House Judiciary Committee hearing on oversight of the Justice Department on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., Dec.r 13, 2017.

During that hearing, he was asked: "Is it ever appropriate for a president of the United States to demand a Department of Justice official or FBI director to take a loyalty pledge?"

Rosenstein replied: "I don't have any opinion about that. Nobody has asked me to take a loyalty pledge other than the oath of office."

The White House and Justice Department declined to comment.

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