As Trump fumes, senators craft a bill to protect Mueller
- Author: Leroy Wright Apr 11, 2018,
Apr 11, 2018, 14:09
The new report about the attempt to fire Mueller is surfacing as the president is fuming over the Federal Bureau of Investigation raid on the office and home of Michael Cohen, the longtime Trump attorney.
President Donald Trump's personal lawyer is asking a federal judge to dismiss a defamation claim brought by a porn actress who said she had an affair with Trump. She argued it was appropriate for Cohen to be investigated because one of the things that separates that US from other nations is that no one is above the law - not even the president's personal attorney.
Donald Trump tried to fire special counsel Robert Mueller again in December, the New York Times reports. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, said during an interview with CNN that it would be "political suicide" for Trump to fire Mueller. Monday's raid was first reported by the New York Times. Cohen has said neither the Trump Organization nor the campaign was a party to the transaction with Daniels and he was not reimbursed.
McDougal's attorney, Peter Stris, declined to comment on the Cohen investigation.
Trump has regularly lashed out at Mueller's investigation as a "witch hunt", and following news of the raid Monday, he offered a mixed response when asked about firing the special counsel.
A senior administration official said the White House has been discussing potential options with key congressional Republican leaders, fearful of "blindsiding them". "And I think it would be a mistake".
And the law enforcement action will nearly certainly amplify the public scrutiny on the payment to Daniels, who says she had sex with Trump in 2006.
Other sources who have spoken with the President echoed that sentiment, telling CNN that Trump views the raid on Cohen as Mueller aggressively going after him. "Make it clear that firing Mueller or interfering in his investigation crosses a red line".
The President perceives a marauding special counsel, an Federal Bureau of Investigation plot to persecute him and a conspiracy within his own government to unfairly pry deep into his personal confidences held by a cherished confidant and personal attorney.
He maintained his actions in the Daniels matter were perfectly legal, but if he could go back, he'd rethink how he handled it.
Top House conservatives have vented their frustration about the process both privately and publicly and Trump responded over the weekend, tweeting that the disagreement is "not looking good" for the Justice Department. Ask President Bill Clinton, who survived the same.
In addition, the New York Times is reporting Tuesday night that Trump seriously considered firing Mueller back in early December when he became furious over news of Mueller issuing subpoenas for the president's banking information and told advisors that he meant to shut the investigation down.
Trump can not directly fire Mueller.
"This Congress must respond forcefully and on a bipartisan basis by reaffirming our belief that the president can not fire the special counsel without cause, and by passing legislation to ensure that any attempts to remove Robert Mueller will be unsuccessful", Schumer said. Rosenstein later begged Speaker of the House Paul Ryan to block the release of a memo written by the House Intelligence Committee that exposed some of the FISA-warrant abuses.
A Justice Department spokesperson declined to comment.
The mood at the department has been grim for months and those inside fear their pool of allies is shrinking.
On Capital Hill, most Republican senators sought to ignore the FBI's raid on Cohen and continued to rebuff calls for legislation that would protect the special counsel from firing.
Trump raised questions about the fate of the special prosecutor Monday night when he spoke with reporters and cast the FBI's raid as an illegal act. He's sending Vice President Mike Pence in his place. The White House cited a need to remain in the United States to monitor the US response to a suspected chemical attack in Syria. "The president has been clear that he thinks this has gone too far, and beyond that I don't have anything to add", Sanders said.