Just in case, let the judges decide

Last May, President Trump fired FBI Director James Comey in a clumsily disguised effort to short circuit the agency's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. To the President's dismay, Robert Mueller was appointed Special Prosecutor to investigate Russian interference in the election including possible improprieties by the Trump campaign, administration, and transition team. Mueller's investigation is wide ranging and has already brought charges against many of Trump's campaign advisors. To prevent Donald Trump from once again trying to fire the Special Prosecutor, Congress should give the investigation statutory protection now.

President Trump and many of his Republican allies in Congress are challenging the legitimacy of the Mueller investigation. Trump calls its allegations “fake news” and, at times, claims the absolute right to control every action of the Department of Justice. On many occasions Trump has attacked the impartiality of the FBI and demanded an end to the investigation and dramatic changes in its leadership. Trump is apparently willing to violate the most basic principles of the constitutional rule of law in order to protect himself, his family and his campaign from scrutiny.

Indeed, last week we learned that President Trump DID try to fire Special Prosecutor Mueller last June and only backed off when his own White House attorney threatened to quit rather than carry out the order. Under current law, there is little to prevent President Trump from removing the Special Counsel and no legal recourse if he did.

Bi-partisan legislation has been introduced in both the House and Senate to protect Mueller and future Special Counsels. The bills propose that if a Special Counsel is fired and disputes the reasons for the termination, he or she can challenge the firing in court. Independent federal judges, rather than senior political appointees in the Justice Department, would get the last word on whether there was good cause for firing. In light of President Trump’s recent attempts to derail the Mueller investigation, it is crucial that some version of this legislation be passed immediately to protect the Special Counsel’s vital investigations and avoid a constitutional crisis.

Call To Action

Call your elected Representatives of BOTH parties. Insist that they immediately take up and pass either the Special Counsel Independence Protection Act (House) or the Special Counsel Integrity Act (Senate.) Tell them that these bills are necessary to insure that we learn the truth about Russian meddling in the election.

The Hard Ask: Ask your elected Representative specifically what he or she will do if President Trump should fire Special Prosecutor Mueller.