Rosenstein postponed retirement to shield Mueller and 'protect the investigation': report
Rod Rosenstein (Photo: Screen capture)

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein's decision to postpone retirement is linked to his desire to protect special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation, according to reports.

NBC's Pete Williams first reported on Tuesday that Rosenstein, who oversees the Russia probe, would not be stepping down as scheduled.

CNN's Evan Pérez later confirmed that the deputy attorney general would be staying at the Justice Department "a little longer."

"March 15 was going to be his last day," Pérez noted. "He's staying a little longer, we don't know exactly how much longer. He hasn't given his notice yet to the White House of exactly his date of departure."

Pérez said that the "guiding force" behind Rosenstein's decision "is that he wanted to make sure that he stayed until he was satisfied the Mueller investigation was either complete or nearly enough to completion that he had helped protect the investigation."

Rosenstein's postponement could be a sign that the investigation is not complete, Pérez suggested.

Watch the video below from CNN.