Senate Committee Advances Bill Protecting Mueller From Trump

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) recently said, "I don't think he [President Trump] should fire Mueller and I don't think he's going to", following calls from senators to draft legislation to protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller in the midst of the Russian Federation investigation.

The 14-7 vote in favor of the bill was divided mostly on party lines, with the Democrats voting yes and the Republicans voting no.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) cited Trump's comments on Fox News Thursday in remarks he made after the committee vote.

The committee also defeated an amendment from Sen.

Donald Trump appeared to suggest on Thursday he has no intention of trying to fire Mueller, for now. But this is exactly what he has done by hearing the bill and giving air to the non-issue of Trump firing Mueller because all of the usual players, including Democratic presidential hopefuls and Senate Democrats facing tough re-election campaigns, have now been given a free news hook to inveigh against Trump. "This bill should be considered by the full Senate", Grassley said.

Trump said the Justice Department has "a witch hunt against the president of the United States going on".

In addition to Graham and Tillis, Republicans Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Jeff Flake of Arizona voted for the bill. John Cornyn (R-Texas), who opposed the measure, there are no plans to give the bill a vote on the Senate floor or in the House, and Trump would never sign it.

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"I don't think he should fire Mueller and I don't think he's going to", the Kentucky Republican said in the interview.

Trump has reportedly mused about firing Mueller and has tweeted that he is "conflicted" in his role as special counsel.

Numerous committee's Republicans argued that the legislation would be unconstitutional, claiming that it would infringe on the executive branch's constitutional powers.

It also requires information about whether the attorney general approved or denied a request by the special counsel to change his or her jurisdiction. "I may change my mind at some point, because what's going on is a disgrace". The bill's reporting requirements would occur only upon conclusion of the investigation, not while an investigation is active.

With every committee Democrat backing the legislation, only one Republican was needed to secure passage.
"So that may be a place for us to land, because, as I have said, I think it would be a mistake" for Trump to fire Mueller.

"I didn't go about this bill because of Mueller", Tillis said.

Giuliani, who joined Trump's legal team last week, conveyed the ongoing resistance of Trump and his advisers to an interview with federal investigators, but did not rule out the possibility, the people said, adding that Giuliani pressed Mueller for clarity on when the probe is expected to end. That legislation stalled for months, but was revived and the two bills were combined two weeks ago as Trump fumed about a raid of his personal lawyer's office, in an investigation overseen by federal prosecutors in NY.