Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) issued a stern warning to President Donald Trump on Tuesday not to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller, for doing so would result in impeachment.
We are begging the president not to fire the special counsel. Don’t create a constitutional crisis. Congress cannot preempt such a firing. Our only constitutional remedy is after the fact, through impeachment. No one wants that outcome. Mr. President, please don’t go there.
We are begging the president not to fire the special counsel. Don't create a constitutional crisis. Congress cannot preempt such a firing. Our only constitutional remedy is after the fact, through impeachment. No one wants that outcome. Mr. President, please don't go there.
— Jeff Flake (@JeffFlake) March 20, 2018
There are growing concerns in Washington that Trump is preparing to, or at the very least, considering finding a way, to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
Mueller’s investigation into Russian election meddling has budded off into a potential obstruction of justice case against the president, as well as possible financial crimes committed by the Trump Organization and its associates.
Indictments, obstruction, money laundering and scores of “ Trump/Russia connections may all be coincidences. That’s why the investigation will continue.
— Jamie Schulte (@JamieSchulte9) March 21, 2018
Despite his plea to the president and threat of impeachment, however, Flake, who sits on the Senate Judiciary Committee and is considered by some to be a potential presidential candidate in 2020, has declined to support legislation that would protect Mueller from being fired in the first place.
Lindsey Graham and Jeff Flake both broached the prospect of impeachment on Tuesday. https://t.co/DB8DadC6rT
— Vox (@voxdotcom) March 21, 2018
Flake told reporters on Monday that he questioned the constitutionality of a law that would protect Mueller from the president’s wrath.
“It needs to be constitutional, and we’re trying to explore that. I’m not convinced that’s what’s been introduced so far is constitutional.”
THANK YOU for actually specifically mentioning impeachment, but I'm a bit confused as to why Congress can't protect Mueller? Half of me is optimistic, thinking you all opt not to in an attempt to bait Trump & impeach once he (inevitably) orders his firing.
— William LeGate (@williamlegate) March 20, 2018
Stop begging. Pass a law.
— Tommy Vietor (@TVietor08) March 20, 2018
The roadblock is political cowardice among Republicans. He has actual power to push legislation. If he’s worried enough to raise impeachment, why not try to attach something to the omnibus? My point is don’t talk – act bc he’s one of a few who can.
— Tommy Vietor (@TVietor08) March 21, 2018
Nevertheless, Flake’s message to Trump is the most aggressive warning issued to the president by any Republican thus far. What would normally be a politically risky move is mitigated by Flake’s intention to not seek reelection in the 2018 midterm elections.
A bold statement from @JeffFlake calling on the President not to fire the Special Counsel & invoking possible impeachment if he does. Of course, it shouldn't be a bold statement; it should be what every member of Congress, Republican or Democrat, is saying. https://t.co/BnNo0iuzkl
— Noah Bookbinder (@NoahBookbinder) March 20, 2018
In an interview with The Washington Post, Flake compared the current drama to the Watergate scandal.
If (Trump) fires (Mueller) without cause, how different is that from what Nixon did with the ‘Saturday Night Massacre’? He left before impeachment came, but that was the remedy then and that would be the remedy now.