Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN) filed a discharge petition that would force House Speaker Paul Ryan to call The Special Counsel Integrity Act to the floor for a vote that would protect Robert Mueller from being unilaterally fired by Trump.
The Special Counsel Integrity Act would make it nearly impossible for Trump to fire Mueller.
The summary of the bill states:
This bill sets forth requirements and limitations with respect to the discipline or removal from office of a special counsel appointed under Department of Justice (DOJ) regulations.
Specifically, a special counsel may be disciplined or removed only by the personal action of an Attorney General who has been confirmed by the Senate. If the Attorney General is recused from the matter, then a special counsel may be disciplined or removed by the most senior DOJ official who has been confirmed by the Senate and is not recused from the matter.
A special counsel: (1) may only be removed for misconduct, dereliction of duty, incapacity, conflict of interest, or other good cause, including violation of DOJ policies; (2) must be informed in writing of the specific reason for the removal; and (3) may file an action for judicial review of the removal.
Rep. Cohen said in a statement provided to PoliticusUSA, “Recent events particularly concern me because it seems the President fears that Mueller is close to revealing findings relevant to his mandate and that ending the investigation is the only way to prevent its public release. If the President has nothing to fear, let the investigation continue. The President maintains there was no collusion or obstruction of justice. Let’s let Mueller finish his job and find out. But as he does so, let’s make it clear he can’t be removed without the legal protections our bill provides. I’m calling on Members of the House, both Republicans and Democrats, to join me in letting the Special Counsel Integrity Act come to the floor for a vote. At this point, the country deserves nothing less.”
There has been companion legislation introduced in the Senate. The big problem is getting a bill passed to protect Mueller hasn’t been bipartisan but getting the members of Congress to agree on a single final bill.
The hurdle for the discharge petition is high. 218 House members must sign the petition before the bill can be considered for a final vote, but The Special Counsel Integrity Act is a bipartisan bill that is co-sponsored by Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC). With dozens of House Republicans already announcing their retirements, supporters of this bill have a good chance of forcing a vote.
Trump’s attacks on Mueller have set off alarm bells, and Democrats are going to force Ryan to act to protect the Special Counsel.
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Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor, who is White House Press Pool, and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association