U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions resigned from his post with the Trump administration on Wednesday, at what he said was the request of President Trump.
“At your request, I am submitting my resignation,” Sessions wrote in a memo. “Since the day I was sworn in as Attorney General of the United States, I came to work at the Justice Department every day determined to do my duty and serve my country.”
In the wake of the announcement, Trump wrote in a tweet that Matthew G. Whitaker, who was chief of staff to the attorney general, will assume the role of acting AG. A permanent replacement will be nominated at a later date.
Department of Justice sources told Fox News Whitaker will not need to be sworn in.
Trump has been critical of Sessions’ performance, particularly regarding his treatment of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Sessions recused himself from the investigation because of his involvement with the president’s campaign.
As recently as September, Trump suggested Sessions may have cost two “very popular Republican congressman” their seats.
Sources told Fox News on Wednesday that Whitaker is expected to oversee the Russia investigation, although his eligibility to do so will have to be determined by Department of Justice ethics officials.
Those same sources also said Trump requested Sessions’ resignation letter before the president held a news conference Wednesday morning, though it was White House chief of staff John Kelly who delivered the news to the former AG.