Senate Judiciary Committee member Chris Coons, D-Del., told "The Story" Wednesday that lawmakers should concentrate their attention on responding to the coronavirus pandemic rather than investigating the FBI's actions during the investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.
"I think that since we are back here in the Senate we ought to be focusing on the pandemic that has killed nearly 100,000 Americans and ground our economy to a halt," Coons told host Martha MacCallum, "..."not relitigating an issue that the inspector general of the Department of Justice, [Michael] Horowitz investigated thoroughly ... and proved that there was good reason to open an investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election."
Coons' remarks prompted MacCallum to push back, telling the Democrat that lawmakers "can walk and chew gum at the same time."
On Monday, Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., announced the panel will soon vote on a subpoena authorization related to the FBI's apparent surveillance abuses in the Russia investigation.
Graham's office stated that the subpoena authorization "covers a number of documents, communications and testimony from witnesses, including [former FBI Director] James Comey, [former FBI Deputy Director] Andrew McCabe, [former Director of National Intelligence] James Clapper, [former CIA Director] John Brennan, [former Deputy Attorney General] Sally Yates and others."
Coons defended the rationale for the probe, telling MacCallum that "it is indisputable that Russia interfered in our 2016 election."
"There was a good foundation for that being a legitimate concern by the Obama-Biden administration at the time," he said.
"The inspector general of the Department of Justice has looked into troubling developments by the FBI, aspects of how they handled the case in its early stages," Coons argued, "but frankly, for the entire Judiciary Committee to now authorize dozens of subpoenas and try to haul back folks from the previous administration when we are in the midst of a pandemic, I would prefer that we be spending our time on looking at issues that would help America respond to and recover from this pandemic."
Fox News' Gregg Re contributed to this report.