Politics Trump's year: Congress bickers over Russia, Mueller looms

11:51  13 january  2018
11:51  13 january  2018 Source:   Associated Press

Paul Manafort Sues Mueller and Asks a Judge to Narrow the Russia Investigation

  Paul Manafort Sues Mueller and Asks a Judge to Narrow the Russia Investigation The highly unusual lawsuit says the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, was given an overly broad mandate and needs to be reined in.WASHINGTON — President Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, sued the special counsel on Wednesday and asked a federal court to narrow his authority, escalating Republican efforts to discredit an investigation that has stretched longer than the White House expected.

Mueller 's investigation is likely to go deep into 2018, if not beyond, and could continue to loom over Trump ' s presidency as Republicans face headwinds in their attempts to retain control of both chambers of Congress . As lawmakers publicly bicker , Mueller is quietly continuing his investigation.

As lawmakers publicly bicker , Mueller is quietly continuing his investigation. Mueller 's investigation is likely to go deep into 2018, if not beyond, and could continue to loom over Trump ' s presidency as Republicans face headwinds in their attempts to retain control of both chambers of Congress .

FILE - In this Oct. 3, 2017, file photo, Chairman Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and Ranking Member Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., right, speak during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington. Republicans who spent the early months of 2017 working with Democrats on investigations into Russian interference in U.S. elections have pivoted as the new year begins, leaving the conclusions of those congressional probes in doubt. As special counsel Robert Mueller has ramped up his own Russian investigation and brought charges against four of President Donald Trump's campaign advisers, and as midterm elections loom, Republicans have changed focus in their own Russia probes. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)© The Associated Press FILE - In this Oct. 3, 2017, file photo, Chairman Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and Ranking Member Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., right, speak during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington. Republicans who spent the early months of 2017 working with Democrats on investigations into Russian interference in U.S. elections have pivoted as the new year begins, leaving the conclusions of those congressional probes in doubt. As special counsel Robert Mueller has ramped up his own Russian investigation and brought charges against four of President Donald Trump's campaign advisers, and as midterm elections loom, Republicans have changed focus in their own Russia probes. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

WASHINGTON — Republicans who spent the early months of 2017 working with Democrats on investigations into Russian interference in U.S. elections have pivoted as the new year begins and midterm elections loom, leaving the conclusions of those congressional probes in doubt.

Key House conservatives say it's time for Sessions to go

  Key House conservatives say it's time for Sessions to go Conservative Republican Reps. Mark Meadows (N.C.) and Jim Jordan (Ohio) are calling on Attorney General Jeff Sessions to step down, citing recent leaks from the Justice Department and FBI. "If Sessions can't address this issue immediately, then we have one final question needing an answer: When is it time for a new attorney general?" the two GOP lawmakers asked in an op-ed for The Washington Examiner. "Sadly, it seems the answer is now," they continued."It would appear he has no control at all of the premier law enforcement agency in the world.

As special counsel Robert Mueller has ramped up his own Russian investigation and brought charges against four of President Donald Trump ' s former campaign advisers, Republicans have changed focus in their own Russia probes. Multiple GOP-led congressional committees are now investigating the

Mueller 's investigation is likely to go deep into 2018, if not beyond, and could continue to loom over Trump ' s presidency as Republicans face headwinds in their attempts to retain control of both chambers of Congress . As lawmakers publicly bicker , Mueller is quietly continuing his investigation.

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As special counsel Robert Mueller has ramped up his own Russian investigation and brought charges against four of President Donald Trump's former campaign advisers, Republicans have changed focus in their own Russia probes. With Trump's encouragement as he nears a year in office, multiple GOP-led congressional committees are now investigating the FBI and whether the bureau conspired against the president during the campaign.

With the exception of the Senate Intelligence Committee, which has maintained bipartisan comity, it's becoming increasingly likely that Congress won't be able to agree on whether Trump's campaign was in any way connected to the Russian meddling or on how to prevent a repeat of Russia's 2016 interference in future elections.

Trump Legal Team Navigates Minefield Ahead of Possible Mueller Interview

  Trump Legal Team Navigates Minefield Ahead of Possible Mueller Interview A meeting between President Donald Trump and Special Counsel Robert Mueller may finally arrive. A source familiar with the Russia investigation told NBC News that Trump’s legal team met with representatives from the special counsel’s office in late-December and is preparing for a possible sit down, or written responses to questions, within the next few weeks.But as Mueller’s office looks toward gaining further insight into Trump’s firing of former FBI Director James Comey, along with the business ties of former national security advisor Mike Flynn, the president’s legal team is navigating a minefield.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans who spent the early months of 2017 working with Democrats on investigations into Russian interference in U. S . elections have pivoted as the new year begins and midterm elections loom . That is leaving the conclusions of those congressional probes in doubt.

As lawmakers publicly bicker , Mueller is quietly continuing his investigation. Mueller 's investigation is likely to go deep into 2018, if not beyond, and could continue to loom over Trump ' s presidency as Republicans face headwinds in their attempts to retain control of both chambers of Congress .

That turns mostly all the attention to Mueller, who has expressed interest in interviewing Trump in the coming months and who has been a consistent thorn for Trump's presidency in the eight months since he became special counsel. Mueller's investigation is likely to go deep into 2018, if not beyond, and could continue to loom over Trump's presidency as Republicans face headwinds in their attempts to retain control of both chambers of Congress.

This past week, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee blamed Republicans for blocking witnesses who Democrats say would be crucial to their Russia probe, laying the blame on the committee's GOP chairman, California Rep. Devin Nunes, and on House Speaker Paul Ryan. Republicans have indicated they want to wrap up the investigation in the first part of 2018.

In the Senate Judiciary Committee, which is also investigating the Russian meddling, Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein released an interview transcript from the committee's investigation over the objections of Chairman Chuck Grassley, saying she was frustrated by Republican attempts to undermine the investigation. Grassley said he was "confounded" by the move.

Top House Intel Dem wants to call Ivanka as witness in Russia probe

  Top House Intel Dem wants to call Ivanka as witness in Russia probe The top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee said he wants to call "dozens" more witnesses to testify in front of the panel in the Russia probe, including first daughter and presidential adviser Ivanka Trump.Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) told Reuters that he would like the committee's GOP leader Rep. Devin Nunes, to call Ivanka Trump and former White House strategist Steve Bannon as witnesses. He also wants Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner to testify again.

Mueller 's investigation is likely to go deep into 2018, if not beyond, and could continue to loom over Trump ' s presidency as Republicans face headwinds in their attempts to retain control of both chambers of Congress . As lawmakers publicly bicker , Mueller is quietly continuing his investigation.

As lawmakers publicly bicker , Mueller is quietly continuing his investigation. Mueller 's investigation is likely to go deep into 2018, if not beyond, and could continue to loom over Trump ' s presidency as Republicans face headwinds in their attempts to retain control of both chambers of Congress .

Trump tried to throw fuel on that disagreement, calling Feinstein "sneaky" in a tweet the next day and saying Republicans should regain control of the investigation.

The partisan fighting is a breakdown from last March, when Nunes and Schiff together established parameters for the investigation and each said it would be bipartisan. Grassley and Feinstein also pledged last spring to work together on the Judiciary committee's probe.

Republicans and Democrats on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee were working together on an investigation, as well, but that ended abruptly in June when the committee's GOP chairman, Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz, resigned from Congress. South Carolina Rep. Trey Gowdy became the committee's chairman and said he would leave the investigating to Mueller.

Other bipartisan efforts have stalled, as well. Republican Sens. Lindsey Graham and Thom Tillis introduced bills with Democrats this summer to protect Mueller in the event that Trump moved to fire him. But a push to pass that legislation has faded as Republicans say they are less concerned that Trump will try to oust Mueller.

Mueller probe would continue during shutdown

  Mueller probe would continue during shutdown The special counsel investigation led by former FBI Director Robert Mueller would be able to continue, even if the federal government shuts down over an impasse on the budget. Load Error A Justice Department spokesperson confirmed to CNN that employees in the special counsel office are considered exempt from furlough and "would continue their operations in the case of a lapse in appropriations.

As lawmakers publicly bicker , Mueller is quietly continuing his investigation. Mueller 's investigation is likely to go deep into 2018, if not beyond, and could continue to loom over Trump ' s presidency as Republicans face headwinds in their attempts to retain control of both chambers of Congress .

As lawmakers publicly bicker , Mueller is quietly continuing his investigation. Mueller 's investigation is likely to go deep into 2018, if not beyond, and could continue to loom over Trump ' s presidency as Republicans face headwinds in their attempts to retain control of both chambers of Congress .

As 2018 has begun, only the Senate Intelligence Committee's investigation remains on bipartisan ground. Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., and Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., have worked closely together as panel staff has quietly interviewed more than 100 witnesses. But Burr has indicated the panel is considering punting until later this year on the question of whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia, issuing instead a bipartisan report focused on election security as the 2018 midterms get underway.

Democrats and Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee are all but certain to issue separate, bipartisan reports that will be believed by members of their own parties. The path of the Senate Judiciary Committee is uncertain as Feinstein and Grassley have disagreed on the focus of the probe.

Republicans say there hasn't been proof yet on collusion, and they blame Democrats for trying to drag out the investigations and chase what they say are false leads. Florida Rep. Tom Rooney, one of several Republicans leading the intelligence committee probe, has said it's time for the investigation to wind down.

"Every single witness we've interviewed has been consistent on what they have testified to," he said.

The Republicans say the FBI angle is not a distraction but rather a look into what they think is real bias in the department. The FBI investigations by several committees ramped up after the discovery of several anti-Trump texts between two Justice department employees who had both worked for Mueller.

As lawmakers publicly bicker, Mueller is quietly continuing his investigation. His team of investigators has expressed interest in speaking with Trump as part of the probe, but no details have been worked out.

Mueller has also tentatively set a trial date in May for former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort, who was indicted in October on charges, including money-laundering conspiracy, related to his lobbying work on behalf of a Russia-friendly Ukrainian political party.

Trump personally made decision to limit Bannon testimony: report .
President Trump reportedly ordered that former White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon limit his testimony before the House Intelligence Committee. Trump's decision came after receiving advice from Uttam Dhillon, a deputy White House counsel, Foreign Policy reports.

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