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The Trump Investigation Thread

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El Guapo
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by El Guapo » Thu Nov 08, 2018 4:44 pm

coopasonic wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 4:39 pm
Carpet_pissr wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:29 am
Just sent this email to Lindsey Graham (who is on the Senate Judiciary Committee):

"I await the "holy hell" you promised if Trump fired Sessions. Please grow a backbone, do your job and confront this growing threat to our democracy and rule of law. "

Graham in July 2017:
“If Jeff Sessions is fired, there will be holy hell to pay.”

Graham yesterday:
“I look forward to working with President @realDonaldTrump to find a confirmable, worthy successor so that we can start a new chapter at the Department of Justice and deal with both the opportunities and challenges our nation faces,”
A bit late on this, but Sessions wasn't fired, so no Holy Hell. He was asked to resign... *totally* different!
I had a meeting with a couple attorneys from Justice this morning, and one of them said that an office-wide e-mail went out yesterday saying basically, "If you want to wish Sessions farewell while he leaves the office, come to the lobby in 11 minutes". So....apparently neither Sessions nor anyone else at DOJ was given much of a notice about this.

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by coopasonic » Thu Nov 08, 2018 5:06 pm

I know it is a technicality, but it is a technicality that Graham will happily hide behind.
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Ralph-Wiggum » Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:32 pm

And, I think (?), it's a technicality which allows Trump to appoint a temporary AG that doesn't need Senate confirmation. Otherwise, I think Rosenstein would be acting AG?

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by tjg_marantz » Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:35 pm

Ralph-Wiggum wrote:And, I think (?), it's a technicality which allows Trump to appoint a temporary AG that doesn't need Senate confirmation. Otherwise, I think Rosenstein would be acting AG?
Even then I don't think that's right.

But I grant you it's complicated and I can't back that up other than with what I've been hearing today.
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by El Guapo » Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:40 pm

tjg_marantz wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:35 pm
Ralph-Wiggum wrote:And, I think (?), it's a technicality which allows Trump to appoint a temporary AG that doesn't need Senate confirmation. Otherwise, I think Rosenstein would be acting AG?
Even then I don't think that's right.

But I grant you it's complicated and I can't back that up other than with what I've been hearing today.
My understanding, when people were talking about Pruitt being moved into the temporary AG role (before he resigned), is that the Vacancies Act allows the President to appoint someone in a temporary role if: (a) the previous office holder resigned (though this requirement is somewhat ambiguous); and (b) the person you are putting in their place is already in a Senate-confirmed position (which Pruitt was, as EPA head).

However, Whitaker was not Senate confirmed in his role as Sessions's Chief of Staff. He was Senate confirmed for a U.S. Attorney role in 2004, but I don't think that the Vacancies Act reaches that far back. And as it happens, Neal Katyal and George Conway (yes, that George Conway) wrote a NYT op-ed today arguing that Whitaker's appointment is unconstitutional.

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The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Carpet_pissr » Thu Nov 08, 2018 7:03 pm

coopasonic wrote:I know it is a technicality, but it is a technicality that Graham will happily hide behind.
He won’t even need to. No one in the Republican realm will even go there when interviewing him, and he will just ignore anybody else that does.

Like Trump, he is very much (and almost literally self-admitted) a Senator to only his base in SC, and everyone else can fuck off (i.e. me).

Before his staged Kavanaugh histrionics, the Republicans here did not even really like him.

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by YellowKing » Thu Nov 08, 2018 7:16 pm

I saw Graham on the news the other day and was struck by how he looks increasingly toad-like as he toadies up to Trump.

And yeah, I know I shouldn't be criticizing people for how they look, but it's a new world. #MAGA

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by hepcat » Thu Nov 08, 2018 7:20 pm

Isgrimnur wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 3:50 pm
hepcat wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 3:47 pm
You know something, Rudy's been awful quiet the last month or so. :?
He's been busy:
Rudy Giuliani was in state Supreme Court in New York on Wednesday, where a lawyer for Judith Giuliani claimed the former New York City mayor has spent over $900,000 since April while claiming he has financial difficulties.

Among the expenditures by "America's Mayor" were $12,012 on cigars and $7,131 on fountain pens over a five-month period, Judith Giuliani's lawyer, Bernard Clair, told Justice Michael Katz, according to NBC New York affiliate WNBC.

In that same time frame, Giuliani, 74, also spent over $286,000 on his alleged mistress, $447,938 "for his own enjoyment" and $165,000 on travel for himself, Clair said.

But since his wife filed for divorce earlier this year, Giuliani has claimed his income has dried up, Clair said, mockingly referring to the problem as "sudden income deficit syndrome."
...
Giuliani and his lawyer say he is representing Trump for free, and the court proceeding revealed what he has given up to take on special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation: from $4 million to $6 million from his former law firm, Greenberg Traurig, which he left in May.
:lol: That's hilario....wait...that's real! :shock:
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The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Carpet_pissr » Thu Nov 08, 2018 7:20 pm

@YK He would be an absolutely perfect ‘Gríma Wormtongue’ in any future LOTR movies or plays. Perhaps I should have suggested that in my email.

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Smoove_B » Thu Nov 08, 2018 9:45 pm

Carpet_pissr wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:29 am
Just sent this email to Lindsey Graham (who is on the Senate Judiciary Committee):

"I await the "holy hell" you promised if Trump fired Sessions. Please grow a backbone, do your job and confront this growing threat to our democracy and rule of law. "
"When was that? What year?


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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Daehawk » Thu Nov 08, 2018 9:57 pm

Look at his stupid face. It is screaming for a bitch slap.

As for Giuliani wouldn't spending money on his mistress be lumped into the "for his own enjoyment" area also?
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by LawBeefaroni » Fri Nov 09, 2018 10:19 am

Just heard an interview where someone was defending the Whitaker pick. One of the points was that "you don't play tight end for the University of Iowa without taking a lot of big hits. And he took lot and got right back up and kept fighting."

While I get that, I can't help thinking that it also means that he, well, has taken a lot of hits. CTE scares me.
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by malchior » Fri Nov 09, 2018 11:10 am

El Guapo wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:40 pm
However, Whitaker was not Senate confirmed in his role as Sessions's Chief of Staff. He was Senate confirmed for a U.S. Attorney role in 2004, but I don't think that the Vacancies Act reaches that far back. And as it happens, Neal Katyal and George Conway (yes, that George Conway) wrote a NYT op-ed today arguing that Whitaker's appointment is unconstitutional.
I saw Alberto Gonzales on CNN this morning and he was essentially taking that position too. He called it a 'little strange' which is him being polite but he was solidly against it. He also said without ambiguity that if the ethics lawyers in DOJ say that Whitaker should recuse then he would expect it.

I also saw Maggie Haberman actually saying that several norms were shattered this week by the Trump camp in quick order. The Whitaker nomination, an allusion to the Acosta video 'tampering', etc. It definitely feels like tension is very high in the 'very serious people' camp.

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by YellowKing » Fri Nov 09, 2018 11:46 am

Yeah I keep saying the next two years are going to be *more* crazy, not less. Trump's been successful the last two years keeping his enemies at arm's length. Mueller, the powerless Democrats. Now he's in a spot where those chickens are coming home to roost. The tighter the noose, the more insane he's going to get.

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Smoove_B » Fri Nov 09, 2018 11:50 am

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LordMortis
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by LordMortis » Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:03 pm

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/11/09/trump-s ... taker.html

President Donald Trump on Friday said he had not discussed special counsel Robert Mueller's with acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker, the man overseeing the inquiry, at least for now.

"I didn't speak to Matt Whitaker about it, I don't know Matt Whitaker," Trump said.
The hell?

We'll see. I fully expect the House to keep it's eye on budgets and allocations of manpower and assets and pray the FOI act will give some visibility to the press. Whitaker is not a shot fired across the bow but he sure has made public statements that has earned the actions under a microscope treatment.

POTUS doesn't need to speak to him when they're telling him what to do and Whitaker is on record as having ideas on how a process is circumvented. (though not openly endorsing the circumvention that I've yet found, no matter what BBSes and Social Media claim without citing)

If POTUS doesn't know Whitaker why would ask for Sessions resignation to make Whitaker the man for now? How is that stable genius?

http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/ ... nt.01.html

How does POTUS not know this when the fake news has been pushing this for how long?

https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/ ... 641682002/

http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2018/09/ ... om&gtm=top
Last edited by LordMortis on Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:08 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by El Guapo » Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:05 pm

Weird, Trump usually doesn't get to the "I don't know the guy" phase until *after* they resign in disgrace. Guess he's a step ahead on this one.

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by malchior » Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:10 pm

This guy is going to be regarded as the worst. Moments like this make the case easily. On one hand the President just claimed he handed over one of the most important functions of the Government to a guy he doesn't know. Which he somehow doesn't see as making him look incredibly incompetent. Or that it is so clearly a lying about that. He specifically bypassed the traditional choice for a guy who likely is not eligible for the spot and so happened to run around tv to specifically make himself known to Trump and his ilk. It is even more astonishing because they don't even try to make seemingly reasonable arguments anymore. He just don't give a fuck. Even more brazenly than before.

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Paingod » Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:16 pm

malchior wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:10 pm
He specifically bypassed the constitutional choice...
FTFY

I'm inclined to side with the people saying this man is an absolute nobody until he's gotten past the review process as constitutionally required for the position and approved for it by people other than the raging hemorrhoid running the US.

This isn't just another nail in the coffin for an Obstruction charge. This is a stake in the vampire's heart.

Not that it matters to the Senate.
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Chaz » Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:38 pm

I've been hearing numerous reports that Whittaker has been going to regular meetings in the Oval Office. That by itself is unusual for a cabinet secretary's chief of staff. But now Trump is claiming he didn't know the guy? The guy who was in his office regularly? One assumes that there's records of who was in Oval Office meetings, and that those records would be obtainable.

But I'm sure it'll be the same as all his other "yes, I was in meetings with him or had him run my campaign, but I really don't pay attention to anyone besides myself, so I didn't notice he was there or anything."
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by LordMortis » Fri Nov 09, 2018 1:27 pm

Chaz wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:38 pm
I've been hearing numerous reports that Whittaker has been going to regular meetings in the Oval Office. That by itself is unusual for a cabinet secretary's chief of staff. But now Trump is claiming he didn't know the guy? The guy who was in his office regularly? One assumes that there's records of who was in Oval Office meetings, and that those records would be obtainable.

But I'm sure it'll be the same as all his other "yes, I was in meetings with him or had him run my campaign, but I really don't pay attention to anyone besides myself, so I didn't notice he was there or anything."
Using the google way back machine, I can see Trump has been meeting with Whitaker behind closed doors without Sessions since at least October which is why all the press have his name and history ready to go.

We haven't crossed the Rubicon but lord know we're dipping our toes in to test the waters. I hate this. That our POTUS can blatantly lie to our face day in and day out and that our Senate our either cowards or conspirators and that nearly 50% of the voting populace approves and that there is a full nother 50% of the whole of the voting age populace who don't even care enough to take a couple of hours every other year to do the bare minimum.

... A republic, if you can keep it.... so the saying goes... :(

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Grifman » Fri Nov 09, 2018 2:35 pm

Just breaking, the WSJ is reporting that Trump played "a central role" in the Stormy Daniels/McDougal payments, and that prosecutors have evidence of "the president's participation in transactions that violate campaign finance laws".

However, if true, the Republican Senate would never impeach him for it, it would have wait prosecution until after his presidency, IMO.
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by LawBeefaroni » Fri Nov 09, 2018 2:57 pm

LordMortis wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 1:27 pm
Chaz wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 12:38 pm
I've been hearing numerous reports that Whittaker has been going to regular meetings in the Oval Office. That by itself is unusual for a cabinet secretary's chief of staff. But now Trump is claiming he didn't know the guy? The guy who was in his office regularly? One assumes that there's records of who was in Oval Office meetings, and that those records would be obtainable.

But I'm sure it'll be the same as all his other "yes, I was in meetings with him or had him run my campaign, but I really don't pay attention to anyone besides myself, so I didn't notice he was there or anything."
Using the google way back machine, I can see Trump has been meeting with Whitaker behind closed doors without Sessions since at least October which is why all the press have his name and history ready to go.





"I don't know Matt Whitaker."

29 days earlier: "I know Matt Whitaker."
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Skinypupy » Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:04 pm

Grifman wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 2:35 pm
Just breaking, the WSJ is reporting that Trump played "a central role" in the Stormy Daniels/McDougal payments, and that prosecutors have evidence of "the president's participation in transactions that violate campaign finance laws".

However, if true, the Republican Senate would never impeach him for it, it would have wait prosecution until after his presidency, IMO.
Article is here.

In any other administration, this would be a very big deal indeed. In this one? Just another day ending in Y.
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Unagi » Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:05 pm

LawBeefaroni wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 2:57 pm
"I don't know Matt Whitaker."
29 days earlier: "I know Matt Whitaker."
Probably lying BOTH times.

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by LordMortis » Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:07 pm

Unagi wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:05 pm
LawBeefaroni wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 2:57 pm
"I don't know Matt Whitaker."
29 days earlier: "I know Matt Whitaker."
Probably lying BOTH times.
Further Not just the only Riplike change but

but "I didn't talk to talk to Matt Whitaker about that"
vs
"But I never talk about conversations that I had,”

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Daehawk » Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:01 am

So now that the Dems have some power are they going to try and impeach Trump or do something?
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by GreenGoo » Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:11 am

No to the first imo. I don't know what "do something" means to the second.

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Unagi » Sun Nov 11, 2018 1:49 pm

Daehawk wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:01 am
So now that the Dems have some power are they going to try and impeach Trump or do something?
They will launch investigations on some of the things we have been wishing the Republican's had been keeping in check. They have subpoena power. They control (to a degree) what legislation even sees the light of day (although the Senate can also close the shades).

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Chaz » Sun Nov 11, 2018 1:54 pm

If they can hold their voting bloc together reliably, the Dems can force the Rs to give the Dems at least some of what they want for any legislation that the Rs really want to pass. They can prevent the hard right stuff from coming to the floor in the first place. They can bring bills specifically to force the Rs to go on record as opposing stuff. They can hold hearings, can force people to come testify under oath, though I don't think there's necessarily much they can do after that aside from get things out in public. They can theoretically start impeachment proceedings, but with the makeup of the Senate, unless the tide turns pretty severely for Trump, I don't see them doing it, since it'd be little more than symbolic.
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Zarathud » Sun Nov 11, 2018 2:13 pm

Do the Republicans really want any legislation besides another tax cut, immigration, and medicaid cuts? All of which had zero chances. They were back to running for what's left of the ACA.

I think they end up letting Trump dismantle things from within the administration, and blaming the Democrats for his incompetence.
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Holman » Sun Nov 11, 2018 9:20 pm

Unagi wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 1:49 pm
Daehawk wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:01 am
So now that the Dems have some power are they going to try and impeach Trump or do something?
They will launch investigations on some of the things we have been wishing the Republican's had been keeping in check. They have subpoena power. They control (to a degree) what legislation even sees the light of day (although the Senate can also close the shades).
Pelosi has been saying that Dems aren't coming in with a vendetta, but that they will instead wait for what Mueller has to report before considering their options.

This is smart politics, especially since (were Mueller's report to fizzle or completely exonerate Trump) a vendetta stance without Special Counel support would burn up a huge amount of political capital.

But I think the expectation (and Pelosi has hinted that she shares this) is that Mueller's findings are going to set things ablaze. The only question is how widely it extends.
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Holman » Sun Nov 11, 2018 9:23 pm

Zarathud wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 2:13 pm
Do the Republicans really want any legislation besides another tax cut, immigration, and medicaid cuts? All of which had zero chances. They were back to running for what's left of the ACA.
They want judges, tons and tons of judges, which they can get with the senate alone.

Getting judges means upholding voter suppression and cementing permanent minority rule.
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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Kraken » Sun Nov 11, 2018 10:10 pm

Holman wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 9:20 pm
Unagi wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 1:49 pm
Daehawk wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:01 am
So now that the Dems have some power are they going to try and impeach Trump or do something?
They will launch investigations on some of the things we have been wishing the Republican's had been keeping in check. They have subpoena power. They control (to a degree) what legislation even sees the light of day (although the Senate can also close the shades).
Pelosi has been saying that Dems aren't coming in with a vendetta, but that they will instead wait for what Mueller has to report before considering their options.

This is smart politics, especially since (were Mueller's report to fizzle or completely exonerate Trump) a vendetta stance without Special Counel support would burn up a huge amount of political capital.

But I think the expectation (and Pelosi has hinted that she shares this) is that Mueller's findings are going to set things ablaze. The only question is how widely it extends.
Bear in mind that the new D members ran on the whole spectrum from Impeachment Now to Republican Lite. Some prominent progressives lost their races, as did some centrist compromisers. Protecting healthcare is the only issue that was a winner for all of them. That's a narrow mandate coming out of the chute. Caution won't be a winning long-term stance, but it is a smart opening position.

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Carpet_pissr » Mon Nov 12, 2018 8:48 am

Holman wrote:
Zarathud wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 2:13 pm
Do the Republicans really want any legislation besides another tax cut, immigration, and medicaid cuts? All of which had zero chances. They were back to running for what's left of the ACA.
They want judges, tons and tons of judges, which they can get with the senate alone.

Getting judges means upholding voter suppression and cementing permanent minority rule.
They already got two hard right SCOTUS picks, and tons of federal judges below them. Politically I think (and the smart R pols know, and have said) they ‘won’ this round handily. If you watch McConnell’s recent press conference, he seems a completely different person than prior to the midterms.

He sounded like a reasonable person again, even charming (as far as a turtle can be charming of course). Why? He got exactly what he (and the real, behind the scene R leaders I suspect) wanted. That and more. Judges at the highest court, and down through the system.

I think they let Trump do his own populist bs and circus thing and used him when they could, while they did the real work that would have positive implications for the R worldview long after the orange idiot is gone.

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Re: The Trump Investigation Thread

Post by Sepiche » Mon Nov 12, 2018 4:03 pm

Tom Daschle & Bill Frist:

Congress made the Starr report public. It shouldn’t hide Mueller’s
President Trump acted quickly to facilitate the exit of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, our former colleague, less than 24 hours after the midterm elections. The appointment as acting attorney general of a longtime critic of Robert S. Mueller III’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election has also raised concerns. Capitol Hill is rightfully sending warning signals — from both sides of the aisle — against any attempt to derail the Mueller probe. But beyond strong words, there are actions Congress can take, including oversight and legislation, to ensure the investigation results in a public report. We know from our own experience how important such actions, and such transparency, will be.

We served together in the Senate for a decade, and for a time we served together as leaders of our respective caucuses — sometimes allies, often adversaries, but never enemies. The growing partisan divide then greatly foreshadowed the politics of today.

As it does now, an investigation into the president of the United States split Congress. We disagreed about the merits of that investigation, and whether it should lead to a House impeachment and Senate trial of President Bill Clinton. But when we look back, one issue on which we vigorously agree is this: A rare moment of bipartisanship allowed Congress and the American public to wrestle with the full implications of the investigation and its findings. In 1998, independent counsel Kenneth Starr sent a report to Congress on his investigation, which began as an examination of an Arkansas land deal decades before, and Congress voted 363 to 63 to release those findings to the public that September. This bipartisan act gave the American people a seat at the table.

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