Republicans on the Hill appear to be divided on whether or not to agree on legislation that would help protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller from being fired by President Trump.
There have been conversations about protecting Mueller in the past, but last week’s report by The New York Times, claiming that Trump wanted to fire the investigator last summer, brought new attention to the matter, even though Trump denied the report and called it “fake news.”
“I have got legislation protecting Mr. Mueller,” Sen Lindsey Graham told ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopoulos” on Sunday. “I’ll be glad to pass it tomorrow.”
The Washington Post reported that Graham has a bi-partisan proposal—joined by Sen. Cory Booker—that calls for a panel to approve any call to fire Mueller.
“Everybody in the White House knows it would be the end of President Trump’s presidency if he fired Mueller.”
The report said House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R.-Calif., turned down calls to pass such a proposal, claiming that there is no need for the safeguard. He said Trump and his team “have fully cooperated” with Mueller’s investigation into possible Russian collusion with Trump’s staff.
The Times reported last week that Trump ordered for Mueller’s firing in June and only backed down after his White House counsel refused to carry out the instruction and threatened to resign.
Trump was asked about the report in Davos, where he was participating in the World Economic Forum, and denied the report and called it “typical” of the paper to run the report.
Sen. Chuck Schumer, D.- N.Y., said that the report calls for Republicans in Congress to act, The New York Times reported.
“The most important thing Congress can do right now is to ensure that Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation continues uninterrupted and unimpeded,” he said.
Schumer was not joined by all of his fellow Senate Democrats. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., said it would be “premature for us to go down that road. Manchin, The Post pointed out, is up for re-election this year in a state where Trump easily won.
The Associated Press contributed to this report