House Republicans Call for Special Counsel Robert Mueller to Resign over Conflicts of Interest

FBI Director Robert Mueller testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, May 9, 2012, before the House Judiciary Committee. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
AP/J. Scott Applewhite

Nearly 10 lawmakers took to the House floor to call on Special Counsel Robert Mueller to resign from his position over conflicts of interest stemming from his role as former FBI director.

“There’s no world in which Mr. Mueller could potentially investigate these matters. It is federal law that even the appearance of a conflict of interest means that someone cannot engage in prosecutorial duties regarding allegations and investigations,” said Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) on Wednesday.

“The conflict of interest is absolutely present. As early as 2009, the FBI knew that we had informants alleging corruption into United States’ uranium assets,” he said.

Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ) led the special order on the House floor to discuss the matter, and was joined by Reps. Mark Meadows (R-NC), Jim Jordan (R-OH), Trent Franks (R-AZ), Louie Gohmert (R-TX), Scott Perry (R-PA), Ted Yoho (R-FL), and Jody Hice (R-GA), and Gaetz.

They argued that Mueller should resign since he was FBI director at the time that it had uncovered evidence in 2009 of a Russian bribery and kickback scheme to expand its business in the U.S. Despite that, the Obama administration approved a 2010 deal to allow a Russian state company to purchase 20 percent of the U.S.’s uranium production assets. Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was a member of a nine-member board that approved the purchase.

During review of the sale, Bill Clinton received $500,000 for a speech in Moscow from a Russian bank that was promoting the deal, and the Clinton Foundation received millions of dollars from investors in the Canadian company, Uranium One, that sold the U.S. assets to the Russian firm.

“If he does not resign, then he should be fired. We believe he has conflicts of interest that do not allow him to proceed with his investigation in an unbiased, independent manner,” Biggs said in a statement.

“Further, he has broadened the scope of his investigation far beyond his charge to examine Russian interference in the 2016 Presidential election. In the process, he is helping to destroy the integrity, perception, and credibility of the American justice system.”

The lawmakers also raised the need for a special prosecutor to be appointed, to look into the Uranium One deal, former FBI Director James Comey, as well as Fusion GPS, the firm that created the Trump dossier that was reportedly used by the FBI to obtain a surveillance warrant on a Trump campaign official.

“The point is to recognize that there are legitimate, unanswered questions about whether the Obama Justice Department involved themselves in a political project targeting then-candidate Donald Trump — a suggestion that has far more evidence behind it than the directionless investigation into Trump-Russian collusion,” Meadows said.

Jordan questioned why Comey complied with then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s request to call the Clinton email investigation a “matter” instead of an investigation.

“Last time I checked, he wasn’t the Director of the Federal Bureau of Matters,” he said.

“Could Mr. Mueller be acting with vengeance? Or to vindicate his good friend and colleague James Comey, who had a very public feud with the president?” Franks questioned.

Perry added, “It is far past time to thoroughly investigate this [Uranium One] deal, the Obama administration’s actions, and the Clinton family’s role.”

“We’ve got to clean this town up, and it will start with the resignation of Mr. Mueller and a proper investigation of all of this underlying case involving Comey, Lynch, the Clintons, and Russia,” Gohmert said.

Gaetz introduced a resolution last week that called for Mueller to resign, and a special counsel to be appointed to investigate the Uranium One deal. It is co-sponsored by Biggs and Gohmert.

“The American people are well aware that the Clinton Foundation functioned largely as a money-laundering organization to influence the State Department, and to ensure that there were special people with special access and special relationships to the Clintons that got special treatment. That is not an America that abides to the rule of law,” Gaetz said.

“If we do not replace Bob Mueller with someone who can come in — absent of association with the individuals who may be implicated — than I fear this great special place that we hold in the world may be diminished,” he said.


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