Democratic senators once again urged Republicans in Congress to pass legislation which will guarantee the protection of special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation now that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s fate is in limbo.
The top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, Senator Mark Warner expressed confidence there was “broad bipartisan support to protect the Mueller investigation,” adding that a bill must be passed immediately.
“There’s been a lot of my Republican colleagues along the way who have said if the time comes, they’ll step up. We’ll see later this week if that time comes along,” Warner also noted.
However, although some GOP lawmakers indicated Monday they were concerned by the possibility that the deputy attorney general may be fired, none of them joined Democrats in their calls to advance legislation to protect Rosenstein.
CNN writes that Rosenstein, who oversees the probe into Russian election interference, will have a meeting with the President on Thursday bringing into question his fate in the Trump administration considering reports that he suggested last year that President Donald Trump should be removed over his incompetence.
North Carolina Republican Senator Thom Tillis said passing a bill to protect Mueller was not a priority. “It’s a bill that I ultimately want to see passed for the future, but it’s not something I’d put on the front-burner.”
Among the Democrats calling for the protection of the special counsel’s investigation was Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence committee. “@SpeakerRyan and @SenateMajLdr, it’s time for a vote on legislation to protect Mueller and the rule of law. No more hiding. No more excuses,” he said in a message directed at the House speaker and the Senate majority leader.
Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal similarly said he expected Republicans to rise to this challenge and hold true to their promise that there would be a firestorm should Trump fire Rosenstein.
Republican Senator Orrin Hatch on his part warned Monday that if the deputy attorney general were fired “it would cause a furor that I don’t think we need right now,” adding, however, that the decision was up to the President.