No. 3 Official at Department of Justice Is Stepping Down

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Brand will relocate to Walmart's hometown of Bentonville, Ark., with her husband and two sons. Some have feared that the president will use the controversial memo by Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), which alleged abuse of power at the Federal Bureau of Investigation and DOJ, to terminate Rosenstein - which Democrats warned would spark a "constitutional crisis".

Rosenstein is the only person right now who is authorized to fire special counsel Robert Mueller, who is leading the investigation that has already brought down four former advisers to Trump, including former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

Rachel Brand, associate attorney general in the Department of Justice, is stepping down from her position, Fox News has confirmed.

Ms. Brand, who became the associate attorney general in May, will become the global governance director at Walmart, the company's top legal position, according to people briefed on her move.

Trump's broadsides have strained morale at the institution, which has always been praised for its independence from the White House. When controversy over Sessions and Rosenstein's future brewed last summer, some speculated she might, at least temporarily, take the reins at the Justice Department.

"The men and women of the Department of Justice impress me every day", Brand said in a statement.

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"Thank you for your strong leadership here at the department", Sessions said.

Brand on Friday lauded Sessions' "commitment to the rule of law".

Sessions also praised her work, calling her a "lawyer's lawyer".

The department said Brand will be leaving her post in the coming weeks.

Trump has publicly ridiculed career officials at both agencies, chiefly because of the Russian Federation investigation, which the president has, at points, called a "witch hunt". As Associate Attorney General, she has played a critical role in helping us accomplish our goals as a Department-taking on human trafficking, protecting free speech on campus, and fighting sexual harassment in public housing. Brand now oversees the DOJ's civil division, the civil rights division and the antitrust division. He earned an undergraduate degree from Duke University and later graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School in 2006. She has been seen as a rising star within the conservative legal world. Indeed, since she didn't now have any ties to the Russian Federation investigation, I doubt she was on his radar screen.

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