The Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY) has vowed to lead the Democratic opposition to any new FBI Director until a special prosecutor is named by the Justice Department to investigate the links between the Trump Administration and the Russian interference in the elections last year.
Appearing on CNN’s State Of The Union, Schumer said:
“I think there are a lot of Democrats who feel that way. We’ll have to discuss it as a caucus, but I would support that move.”
Schumer was seconding an idea proposed late last week by Senator Mark Warner (D-VA), the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee tasked with investigating the Russian involvement in Trump’s rise to power.
“Remember, the criteria for a special prosecutor, independent in making day-to-day decisions from the hierarchy in the Justice Department and the White House, can only be fired for cause, has to report to Congress, and, very importantly, can look into any attempts to thwart the investigation, are all really important criteria,” Schumer told Tapper on Sunday.
“And to have that special prosecutor, people would breathe a sigh of relief, because then there would be a real independent person overlooking the FBI director.”
While Trump has not yet named a replacement for the former FBI Director James Comey, whom he unceremoniously fired last week in a fit of pique over his refusal to drop the Russia investigation, his administration spent Saturday interviewing candidates, and he is rumored to want to make a nomination before he leaves for his first overseas trip as President later this week.
The Democrats’ ability to hold up Trump’s nominee is limited, however, given their minority status in the Senate. They would need support from at least a few of their Republican colleagues to completely hold up the nomination. Senator John McCain has already announced his support for an independent prosecutor, and several Republican Senators who are up for re-election next year are reportedly thinking carefully about whether to link their fortunes to a President who has already admitted to firing the FBI because his investigations were hitting too close to home.
Senator John McCain has already announced his support for an independent prosecutor, and several Republican Senators who are up for re-election next year are reportedly thinking carefully about whether to link their fortunes to a President who has already admitted to firing the FBI because his investigations were hitting too close to home.
“The key here, of course, is getting some of our Republican colleagues to join us,” Schumer said. “Where is the Howard Baker of 2017?”
“To destroy them would be a violation of law,” Schumer said. “He should turn them over to Congress and to the investigators. If there are no tapes, he should apologize to both Jim Comey and the American people.”
“The actions of the last week make all the more reason that he should not be attorney general,” Schumer said.
Vinnie Longobardo is a 35-year veteran of the TV, mobile & internet industries, specializing in start-ups and the international media business. His passions are politics, music and art.