WASHINGTON (AP) — Democrats are insisting on an independent prosecutor to investigate possible links between the Trump campaign and Russia following FBI Director James Comey’s firing.
Rep. Suzan DelBene, D-Wash., said, “The American people deserve to know the full extent of Russia’s grip on the Trump administration. Firing the head of the department investigating this severe threat to our democracy only creates more chaos, confusion and questions.
“The lack of transparency, and frankly now blatant interference from this President, easily merit an independent investigation. This is not about Democrats and Republicans, this is about the fabric of our democracy and how America conducts itself on the world stage,” DelBene said.
In one of the videos above, Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said he told Trump, "You're making a big mistake."
Republican John McCain says Congress must form a special committee to investigate Russia's interference in the 2016 election following Trump's firing of Comey.
The Arizona senator said he has long called for a special congressional committee to investigate Russian interference in the election and said Trump's decision to remove Comey "only confirms the need and the urgency of such a committee."
McCain said he was disappointed in Trump's decision, calling Comey a man of honor and integrity who led the FBI well in extraordinary circumstances.
Republican Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee said Comey's dismissal "will raise questions" and said "it is essential that ongoing investigations are free of political interference until their completion."
He said Trump must nominate a well-respected person to replace Comey.
Sen. Kamala Harris of California tweeted: "I've said it before and will again — we must have a special prosecutor to oversee the FBI's Russia investigation. This cannot wait."
Rep. Steve Cohen of Tennessee said "our democracy is in danger," and he pressed House Speaker Paul Ryan to appoint a bipartisan commission to investigate the Trump-Russia relationship.
Sen. Dick Durbin, the No. 2 Democrat in the Senate, stood on the Senate floor and said he would await word from the White House on whether the investigation will continue.
Sen. Bob Casey of Pennsylvania called on Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to appoint a special counsel.
Trump called at least two members of the Senate Judiciary Committee minutes before the White House announced the dismissal of Comey on Tuesday.
Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California both said they received calls from Trump. Graham is heading the panel's probe into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and Feinstein is the top Democrat on the committee.
Neither senator criticized the decision. Graham was supportive, saying that "given the recent controversies surrounding the director, I believe a fresh start will serve the FBI and the nation well."
Feinstein said Trump told her the FBI needed a change, and that the next director "must be strong and independent."