Politics Here are the differences between a special counsel, a special prosecutor, and an independent counsel

23:55  18 may  2017
23:55  18 may  2017 Source:   Business Insider

Who appoints a special prosecutor?

  Who appoints a special prosecutor? President Trump’s abrupt firing of FBI Director James Comey triggered renewed calls this week from Democratic senators for the appointment of a special counsel or independent prosecutor to investigate ties between President Trump’s associates and Russia.  “If there was ever a time when circumstances warranted a special prosecutor, it is right now,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said Wednesday on the Senate floor, a day after Comey’s dismissal.But the power to appoint a special prosecutor rests with a key figure in the Trump administration who played a role in Comey’s firing.

The terms special counsel , special prosecutor , and independent counsel were thrown around interchangeably amid calls for an Here are the differences between a special counsel , a special prosecutor , and an independent counsel . The Justice Department appointed former

Special Counsel ? What’s the Difference ? Related: Here 's the One Man Who Could Turn Up the Heat on Trump. Also Wednesday, Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal said, “What’s needed now is in fact an independent counsel and special prosecutor .”

Robert Mueller© Provided by Business Insider Robert Mueller

The Justice Department appointed former FBI director Robert Mueller as special counsel to look into the ties between Russia and Trump campaign officials on Wednesday.

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As calls from lawmakers and the public for an independent investigation have surged in recent months, the terms special counsel, special prosecutor, and independent counsel have been thrown interchangeably.

And while all three refer to a person tasked to investigate potential legal breaches amid conflicts of interest in the government, the three terms have been used at different points in time and for different reasons.

Who appoints a special prosecutor?

  Who appoints a special prosecutor? President Trump’s abrupt firing of FBI Director James Comey triggered renewed calls this week from Democratic senators for the appointment of a special counsel or independent prosecutor to investigate ties between President Trump’s associates and Russia.  “If there was ever a time when circumstances warranted a special prosecutor, it is right now,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said Wednesday on the Senate floor, a day after Comey’s dismissal.But the power to appoint a special prosecutor rests with a key figure in the Trump administration who played a role in Comey’s firing.

Democratic senators have called repeatedly for a special prosecutor , more often called an independent or special counsel , to be appointed. But what exactly is a special prosecutor , how does he or she get appointed, and what happens next?

In fact, the term " Special Counsel " has replaced the terms " Special Prosecutor " and " Independent Counsel " to describe an investigation undertaken by the Department of Justice where And what is the difference between a special counsel , a special prosecutor , and an independent counsel ?

A special counsel is a government prosecutor who has been appointed to oversee a criminal investigation where the Justice Department has a conflict of interest or under certain circumstances where it would be "in the public interest" to appoint a investigator outside the department.

In the case of the Trump/Russia investigation, Attorney General Jeff Sessions' recusal, as well the heightened scrutiny after the firing of FBI director James Comey, prompted Deputy Attorney General to appoint Mueller as special counsel. He cited the  "unique circumstances of this matter."

The appointment of a special counsel by the attorney general or deputy attorney general is "unreviewable," according to the Center for Legal and Economic Studies.

Here’s how an independent investigation into Trump and Russia would happen

  Here’s how an independent investigation into Trump and Russia would happen Sorting out the “special prosecutors” from the “independent commissions.”Special counsel:

× Here 's how a special prosecutor investigating Trump and Russia would get appointed. Democratic senators have called repeatedly for a special prosecutor , more often called an independent or special counsel , to be appointed.

Independent Counsels , Special Prosecutors , Special Counsels , and the Role of Congress. Jack Maskell Legislative Attorney . June 20, 2013. This report provides information on the procedure for the appointment of an “ independent counsel ,” a “ special prosecutor ,” or a “ special counsel ” to

The term special counsel simply replaced the term "special prosecutor" that was used through the 1980s,  after which the laws around special prosecutors expired and were not renewed, therefore retiring the term.

Both terms refer to an independent overseer who can investigate governmental records and press criminal charges.

The term independent counsel, comes from Congress's post-Watergate decision to authorize the creation of an independent special counsel for investigations in 1978 with the Ethics in Government Act. The law dictated that a three-judge panel of the US Court of Appeals in Washington, DC, appoint the counsel.

The law, which was reauthorized several times until 1999, was used more than a dozen times to initiate investigations, according to PBS Frontline. It was used perhaps most famously in the 1990s to appoint Kenneth Starr to oversee investigations into President Bill Clinton's conduct.

Here’s how an independent investigation into Trump and Russia would happen

  Here’s how an independent investigation into Trump and Russia would happen Sorting out the “special prosecutors” from the “independent commissions.”Special counsel:

And what is the difference between a special counsel , a special prosecutor , and an independent counsel ? Here are some examples of when past presidents appointed special prosecutors : The Whiskey Ring scandal.

Part III discusses the availability of prosecutorial discre-tion in independent counsel investigations, and the differences be -tween independent counsel The past appointments of special prosecutors / independent counsel and the. Process involved with the law.

The current term used is "special counsel" and can be appointed only by the president, the attorney general or the deputy attorney general.

As special counsel, Mueller, once he is finished with the Trump-Russia investigation, can either pass his findings to Congress or leave the decision on what to do with the findings with the attorney general.

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Special Counsel Robert Mueller is working on operation budget for probe .
Mueller, the former FBI director, was appointed last week to oversee the investigation into Russia's interference in the 2016 electionThe size of the staff has not yet been determined. The money to fund the investigation will come out of the government's "permanent indefinite appropriation" fund which is allocated specifically to pay for all necessary expenses of investigations and prosecutions by independent counsels.

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