The day after his party lost its lock on the Congress, US President Donald Trump has asked Attorney General Jeff Sessions to resign, effectively firing him, before hitting out at Republicans for losing their seats and lashing out at reporters who challenged him.
Sessions' resignation letter has been delivered to White House chief of staff John Kelly.
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is expected to remain in charge of the Russia investigation and special counsel Robert Mueller.
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The resignation was the culmination of a toxic relationship that frayed just weeks into the attorney general's tumultuous tenure, when he stepped aside from the investigation into potential coordination between the president's campaign and Russia.
Trump blamed the decision for opening the door to the appointment of special counsel Robert Mueller, who took over the Russia investigation and began examining whether Trump's hectoring of Sessions was part of a broader effort to obstruct justice and stymie the probe.
Trump did not answer a direct question about Sessions during his fiery news conference, saying that on the whole he is 'extremely' satisfied with his Cabinet.Republicans yesterday lost control of the House of Representatives to Democrats, but Trump shrugged that off.
The Democrats did not fare as well in the Senate.
The party lost seats in the conservative states of Indiana, Missouri and North Dakota, and are staring down the barrel of defeats in Montana and Florida.
During a raucous news conference that lasted close to 90 minutes, he cast the congressional election results as 'very close to complete victory' for Republicans and said he could negotiate easier on some issues with Democrats, anyway.
Some reporters pushed him on whether his campaign rhetoric on migrants from central America was divisive - and on developments in a federal investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
Trump aggressively pushed back.
'CNN should be ashamed of itself, having you working for them,' Trump told CNN correspondent Jim Acosta.
'You are a rude, terrible person.'
A White House staffer grabbed and pulled the microphone while Acosta held it in his hands.
To PBS NewsHour's Yamiche Alcindor, who asked him about white nationalists being emboldened by Trump labelling himself a 'nationalist', Trump said he was insulted.
'That's such a racist question,' Trump said.
Trump took the rare step of mocking Republican candidates who kept their distance from him during the campaign because of concerns that his divisive messages on immigration would turn off voters.
'Carlos Curbelo, Mike Coffman - too bad, Mike,' he said, referring to losing Republican congressmen in Florida and Colorado contests.
Trump scorned Utah's Mia Love and Virginia's Barbara Comstock, both Republican representatives.
'Mia Love gave me no love,' he said.
'And Barbara Comstock was another one. I mean, I think she could have won that race, but she didn't want to have any embrace.'
Trump also warned Democrats against using their new political power to investigate him.
Some House Democrats have threatened to use the subpoena power they will gain in January to investigate Trump and his administration's actions.
The president warned he will respond in kind and government will suffer, plus, he said, Democrats have 'nothing, zero' on him.
- With AAP, CNN