What the acting attorney general thinks of the Mueller probe

Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan is one of the speakers., 21 holds the flag behind her.) People hold a protest to protect the Mueller investigation on Boston Common across from the State House

"The whole issue of presidential harassment is interesting", McConnell told reporters, when asked what Senate Republicans would do if Democrats attempted to obtain Trump's tax return.

Whitaker has questioned Mueller's authority to investigate aspects of Trump's election campaign and suggested how to end the investigation: by cutting its budget.

"We've got something wonderful in this country; it's called the Constitution", Wyden added.

Mueller's team is paid for under a permanent fund for investigations by independent counsels that was established in 1998, which means it's not subject to Congress's routine spending debates. The Portland Press Herald reported that rallies also were held in Bangor, Belfast, Brunswick, Kittery, Lewiston and Rockland.

"I was very surprised".

"People ... across this country gathered today to say ..." Drivers and bus passengers faced some delays as protesters took to the streets.

Democratic senators took the call one step further.

He said many people fear Whitaker could try to wind down the investigation or even hide Mueller's final report.

Professor Scott Lucas of the University of Birmingham described the situation as "unprecedented" but said the Democrats would likely have a plan in place should Trump make a move on Mueller through the acting attorney general or a future appointment.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., has walked back the vow he made past year that there would be "holy hell to pay" if President Donald Trump fired Attorney General Jeff Sessions. "The president is not the king, and that's how he's acting".

However, some lawmakers might use upcoming debates over government spending to advance legislation to protect Mueller's investigation. Trump, who denies any collusion, has long complained about the probe, calling it a witch-hunt.

The US President fired Sessions after he had been critical of him for failing to stop the Russian Federation investigation.

The Boston demonstrators demanded that Whitaker recuse himself from the Russian Federation probe and urged federal lawmakers to act immediately to protect the special counsel's office. Whitaker, however, has made comments skeptical of the Mueller probe.

Ironically, Mueller spelled out his supervisor's power to shape and limit his probe in a legal brief filed Thursday in response to a lawsuit challenging his appointment.

Protesters in Portland said Trump's actions have put democracy and democratic values in peril.

"We are in the lowest of the low times", Samuelian said. "We have to get rid of Trump".

"I was anxious someone wouldn't stand up", Viola said.

Answering allegations Thursday that the White House had used a clip edited by a notorious right-wing conspiracy theorist, Trump spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said: "We stand by our statement".

Several people were invited to speak during the protest, which lasted about 40 minutes.

"It's time to do what we can because our elected officials are not doing their job", Miller said.

Whitaker told CNN in 2017 he could envision a situation where a new attorney general would "reduce (Mueller's) budget so low that his investigation grinds to nearly a halt".

"This can not just be a moment", speaker Jean Capler said.

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