Mr. Rosenstein raised the issue of recusal with Assistant Attorney General Rachel Brand, the Justice Department’s third in command. Ethically and legally, Mr. Rosenstein should recuse himself if he is considered a witness or part of the Russia probe. Such a determination would likely come from the Justice Department’s general counsel office, which Mr. Rosenstein reportedly hasn’t sought yet.
The Deputy Attorney General took control of the Russia investigation after Attorney General Jeff Sessions publicly recused himself from it.
The possible recusal of Mr. Rosenstein shows the widening nature of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe. If Mr. Rosenstein recused himself, then Ms. Brand would take responsibility for the Russia investigation. Ms. Brand was recently confirmed for her role.