Republican Senator pours cold water on bipartisan plans to stop Trump from obstructing investigation

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Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) said on Sunday that he doesn’t see the two bipartisan plans in the Senate to protect Special Counsel Bob Mueller from being fired “going very far.”

“The Independent Counsel statute in the 1970s and ’80s and ’90s was a disaster,” Cotton told Face The Nation host, John Dickerson. “We have an executive branch in which the power of all the departments and all the agencies reports to the single elected member of the President [sic].”

But ceding all that power to President Trump is exactly what prompted these two bipartisan plans in the first place. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) co-wrote legislation with Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) that would effectively block the president from president from firing the special counsel without the approval of a federal judge.

“We need balance here.” Graham told reporters last Tuesday. “Any effort to go after Mueller would be the beginning of the end of the Trump presidency.”

Additionally, Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC) and Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) co-sponsored legislation that would allow a judicial panel to reinstate Department of Justice nominees if fired without just cause. The senators proposed that special counsels in particular “may only be removed for misconduct, dereliction of duty, incapacity, conflict of interest, or other good cause, like a violation of departmental policies.”

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) tweeted the same week these bipartisan bills were proposed, warning the Trump administration that their schedule is already set for the rest of the year and does not allow for nominations, should the president decide to fire his attorney general or special counsel.

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