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Politics

Maine Senators Say They Support Legislation Protecting Mueller Investigation

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The Senators in 2014. Both support a measure in Congress that would protect the independent investigation of special counsel Robert Mueller into Russian meddling in U.S. elections.

Both of Maine’s U.S. Senators are supporting a measure in Congress that would protect the independent investigation of special counsel Robert Mueller into Russian meddling in U.S. elections.

The Senate Judiciary Committee has already approved legislation co-authored by Republican Jeff Flake, of Arizona, and Democrat Chris Coons, of Delaware, that would make it difficult for President Trump to meddle in the investigation or to have Mueller fired before he completes his work.

Senator Susan Collins says she supports the bill.

“My first obligation is to ensure that Bob Mueller, whom I know quite well and worked with when I was head of the Committee On Homeland Security, has the latitude and resources that he needs,” says Collins.

Collins also praised Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who was fired this week, saying he was right to recuse himself from oversight of the investigation. She also expressed concerns about acting Attorney General Matt Whitaker, who has never held a justice department post that required Senate confirmation. While the Flake legislation has bipartisan support, Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell has said he doesn’t believe a vote is warranted.

Maine senator Angus King disagreed in an interview with NPR.

“Whether they will move it, I don’t know,” says King. “But, I have always wondered, the President continues to declare his innocence. If indeed he is as innocent as he says, he ought to want this investigation. He ought to want this investigation to go as far as it can and clear his name.”

But in a series of tweets, the President has made it clear that he opposes the legislation. The Senate returns from its election break on Tuesday. There is no vote scheduled on the Flake/Coons bill.

Originally published 4:10 p.m. Nov. 9, 2018