Saturday, 19 Jan 2019

Senator Collins GOP calls for vote on a bill to prevent the dismissal of Mueller

Senator Susan Collins (R-Me.) Speaks to the media outside Bath Iron Works, where she spoke on Friday at a ceremony marking the construction of a new warship. (David Sharp / AP)

Senator Susan Collins said Friday that special advocate Robert S. Mueller III was to be allowed to complete his investigation into Russia's interference in the 2016 election and called on the Senate to vote on a law that would protect it from removal.

The Maine Republican said she was "concerned" by Acting Attorney General Matthew G. Whitaker, who criticized Mueller's investigation and is now overseeing it.

"For these reasons, I think we should introduce in the Senate a bill that would limit the ability of President Donald Trump to remove the special advocate," Collins said in a statement.

"A debate in the Senate and the passage of this bill would send a powerful message: Mr. Mueller must be able to complete his work without hindrance," she said.

The future of the Mueller probe is uncertain now that Trump has ousted Attorney General Jeff Sessions and has temporarily replaced him with Whitaker, a political loyalist who has publicly speculated on ways to stop efforts.

The sessions had previously been challenged to oversee the investigation, leaving daily supervision to Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein.

But while Rosenstein remains responsible for this oversight, Collins noted, "Mr. Whitaker has the power to intervene at any time. "

Whitaker does not intend to recuse himself to oversee the investigation, said his relatives.

Collins' statement was made after Senator Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) ad Chris Coons (D-Del.) And himself would try to force a vote next week on a bill to prevent the dismissal of Mueller.

The bill should not be the subject of a vote because Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Has repeated it continually useless.

"The President has repeatedly said that he will not give up on Mueller 's investigation," McConnell said Friday in Kentucky, according to the Associated Press. "He has said over and over again that it would be permissible to finish. That also happens to be my opinion. "


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