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Senator Collins’ Statement on Legislation to Protect the Special Counsel’s Investigation

Washington, D.C.—U.S. Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) issued this statement today on legislation to protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller:


“It is imperative that Special Counsel Robert Mueller be allowed to complete his investigation into Russian influence efforts during the 2016 elections. 


“Under Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s leadership, the Special Counsel has been given all of the resources that he has needed to follow the evidence wherever it may lead.  I am concerned about comments that Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker has made regarding the Special Counsel and the parameters of his investigation.  Although Mr. Rosenstein remains in charge of day-to-day oversight, Mr. Whitaker has the authority to intervene at any time in contrast to the recusal of former Attorney General Jeff Sessions.  


“For these reasons, I believe that we should bring to the Senate floor legislation that would put restrictions on the ability of President Donald Trump to fire the Special Counsel.  This bill would codify the restriction that the Special Counsel can only be fired for good cause and in writing. The bill further specifies that only a Senate-confirmed Justice Department official could remove the Special Counsel.  Acting Attorney General Whitaker is not a Senate-confirmed official. 


“Senate debate and passage of this bill would send a powerful message that Mr. Mueller must be able to complete his work unimpeded.”