Tell Senate Republicans: Pass the Special Counsel Transparency Act
A bipartisan bill was just introduced in the Senate to protect Robert Mueller's investigation.1 If passed, the Special Counsel Transparency Act will ensure that Mueller can release his report directly to Congress and the public, guaranteeing that Trump can't bury or censor the investigation's findings.
Trump has been nothing if not relentless in his attempts to interfere with and sabotage Mueller. And his Republican lackeys in Congress have consistently failed to push back. But Mueller's latest indictment of Trump's long-time adviser Roger Stone proves the most direct link yet between the Trump campaign and Russian intelligence. It's finally time for Senate Republicans to draw a line in the sand, stop being complicit in undermining our democracy and protect the investigation.2
Tell Senate Republicans: Pass legislation to protect the special counsel investigation.
Stone's indictment is the most recent of 37 indictments or guilty pleas Mueller produced in the last year and a half. It's also the most damning evidence for collusion with Russia yet.3 Mueller disclosed evidence that an "unnamed contact" directed a senior campaign official to contact Stone to get information from WikiLeaks, a known front for Russian intelligence, to sabotage the 2016 presidential elections. 4
Last year, the Senate Judiciary Committee passed legislation to protect Mueller from being fired without just cause.5 Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell refused to bring it to the floor for a vote, hiding behind the ridiculous excuse that he didn't think Trump would try to fire Mueller.6
Now, Senate Republicans seem prepared to confirm William Barr as attorney general.7 Barr has made it clear that he won't recuse himself when it comes to the Mueller investigation or commit to releasing Mueller's report to the public.8
Up until now, it's been clear that Senate Republicans are either too afraid of Trump or too committed to protecting the Trump administration from the Mueller investigation. That's why we need them to take a strong stance in defense of our democracy and pass the Special Counsel Transparency Act immediately.
The vast majority of Americans think Mueller should conduct his investigation without White House interference.9That's why many Republican senators have paid lip service to the polls and said they agree with the American people that Trump would be crossing a red line by disrupting the investigation now. But lip service is not enough. They need to pass this bill and send a strong message to Trump that the Senate will no longer be complicit in his attempts to undermine Mueller.
Let's ramp up the pressure and demand that Senate Republicans act now to pass the Special Counsel Transparency Act and protect our democracy.
- Sen. Richard Blumenthal, "Blumenthal & Grassley Introduce Special Counsel Transparency Act," Jan. 28, 2019.
- Mark Mazzetti, Eileen Sullivan and Maggie Haberman, "Mueller Reveals Link Between Trump Campaign and WikiLeaks’ Efforts to Damage Clinton," The New York Times, Jan. 25, 2019.
- Andrea Marks, "Timeline: All the Mueller Indictments and Plea Deals So Far," Rolling Stone, Jan. 24, 2019.
- Brian Murphy, "These Republicans co-wrote a bill to protect Mueller. Now they won’t push for it," The News & Observer, Aug. 22, 2018.
- Mazzetti, Sullivan and Haberman, "Mueller Reveals Link Between Trump Campaign and WikiLeaks’ Efforts to Damage Clinton."
- Lauren Gambino, "McConnell says he will not allow vote on bill protecting Mueller from firing," The Guardian, April 17, 2018.
- Charles P. Pierce, "William Barr Was Chosen By This Administration* to Protect This Administration*," Esquire, Jan. 15, 2019.
- Jackie Kucinich and Spencer Ackerman, "William Barr Defends Mueller, But Won’t ‘Surrender’ If Told to Recuse From Trump-Russia Probe," Daily Beast, Jan. 15, 2019.
- Scott Clement and Emily Guskin, "Post-ABC poll: Majority of Americans support Mueller’s probe of Russia, Trump campaign," Washington Post, April 13, 2018.
Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images