Democrats say Trump’s Mueller tweets were obstruction of justice

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It didn’t go over well among Democrats.

A number of high-ranking Democrats have accused President Donald Trump of obstructing justice after he tweeted on Wednesday that Attorney General Jeff Sessions should “stop” Special Counsel Robert Mueller‘s probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Trump, in a series of tweets blasting the investigation, said Sessions should “stop this Rigged Witch Hunt right now, before it continues to stain our country any further.”

Sessions recused himself from overseeing the probe, leaving Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in charge of it.

In response to the tweet, several Democrats said it appeared that the president was trying to influence the investigation, which has indicted nearly two dozen Russian officials and cyberactors for allegedly interfering in the 2016 election.

Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) said it was obvious to him that Trump’s demand of Sessions was obstruction of justice.

“As a former prosecutor, I call this obstruction of justice. No one is above the law—not even the president. People in New Mexico and across the country are tired of ultra-rich and powerful people like Donald Trump trying to abuse their power to protect themselves,” he wrote on Twitter.

Meanwhile, Sen. Edward Markey (D-Mass.) put it more bluntly.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) called Trump’s demand of Sessions “outlandish” and called on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to allow for a vote on legislation to protect Mueller’s investigation.

“Trump’s outlandish request for AG Sessions to stop the Special Counsel’s investigation is like the Saturday Night Massacre. Firing the Special Counsel is an absolute red line. Sen McConnell must bring Special Counsel protection legislation to the floor,” Blumenthal wrote in a series of tweets. “Ongoing obstruction of justice in real time right before our eyes—as Trump’s tweets add mounting evidence of criminal intent. Republican colleagues will be judged harshly if they fail to stand up for the Special Counsel.”

But Senate Democrats weren’t the only ones who took issue with the president’s tweet.

Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) said that the president was obstructing justice in “full public view.”

“Just because @realDonaldTrump obstructs justice in full public view by calling on Sessions to interfere in Mueller investigation doesn’t mean it’s not obstruction of justice. Like when @POTUS went on TV & said he fired Comey due to Russia investigation. That was also obstruction,” he wrote on Twitter.

Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.) said if Mueller is fired, that the president could face impeachment.

“Seems like a good time to restate: Firing Mueller would be an impeachable offense,” the representative wrote.

Similarly, Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Tx.) implied that Trump’s tweets were because the investigation was “leading closer” to the president.

“The trail of evidence regarding conspiracy, money laundering and obstruction of justice is leading closer to the President and people important to him. The truth must be allowed to come out. #MuellerInvestigation,” he wrote.

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), who has drawn the ire of Trump amid the investigation, said the United States should “never accept” Trump’s demand for Sessions to end the probe.

“The President of the United States just called on his Attorney General to put an end to an investigation in which the President, his family and campaign may be implicated. This is an attempt to obstruct justice hiding in plain sight. America must never accept it,” he wrote.

It is quite clear that the president’s idea of Sessions ending Mueller’s investigation did not go over well with Democrats.

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Andrew Wyrich

Andrew Wyrich

Andrew Wyrich is a politics staff writer for the Daily Dot, covering the intersection of politics and the internet. Andrew has written for USA Today, NorthJersey.com, and other newspapers and websites. His work has been recognized by the Society of the Silurians, Investigative Reporters & Editors (IRE), and the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ).