On Wednesday our country shared a big victory when Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein appointed a special prosecutor to oversee the FBI’s Russia investigation. The new special prosecutor is former FBI director Robert S. Mueller III, appointed precisely because of his degree of independence form the normal chain of command. This announcement came on the heels of a particularly tumultuous series of steps (or missteps) by Trump and his administration around Russia and the FBI’s investigation.
Exactly one day after firing FBI Director James Comey while Comey was overseeing the investigation into Trump–Russia connections, Donald Trump disclosed highly sensitive classified information to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Ambassador Sergey Kislyak in the Oval Office. The American press was banned from the meeting, but Russian state media was allowed to document it. The Washington Post received leaked information about the meeting and reported the event early this week. The White House promptly to denied Trump’s reveal of classified information, but that denial was soon after swept aside by Trump himself, who admitted to talking with the Russians about classified information and justified it as his “absolute right”.
Although it may be legal for Trump to disclose such information, his actions show a disregard for national security, international alliances, and the lives of sources on the ground. The fact that Rosenstein has appointed the special prosecutor is, according to the Washington Post, a distinct sign that Trump badly damaged the credibility of the FBI’s investigation.
The special prosecutor is a step in the right direction in uncovering any potentially severe national security threats by Russia and by the Trump team because of its relationship with Russia. However, it is only a first step. A far more important step would be the establishment of an independent commission or select committee. As David Frum reported in The Atlantic last weekend, any wrongdoing can easily be hidden behind the shield of a special prosecutor for months or even years. An independent commission is the best way to reveal truth. According to Frum:
“A select committee of Congress or an independent commission of nonpartisan experts established by Congress can ask the broad question: What happened? A select committee or an independent commission can organize its inquiry according to priority, leaving the secondary and tertiary issues to the historians. A select committee or an independent commission is not barred from looking at events in earlier years statutes of limitations. A select committee or an independent commission seeks truth.”
It’s time to ask our Members of Congress to put country before party to protect the national security and well-being of our nation.
CALL TO ACTION
- Call Senator Mike Lee and Senator Orrin Hatch and ask them to support an independent investigation into Trump’s ties to Russia. Ask staffers if our senators plan to support an independent investigation and report back how their staffers reply.
- Call your U.S. Rep and ask them to support Rep. Eric Swalwell’s bipartisan bill, the Protecting Our Democracy Act, for an independent bipartisan commission to investigate Russian interference in the election. On Wednesday Nancy Pelosi filed a Discharge Petition to get this bill (H.R. 356) a vote on the House floor. It will need 218 signatures to get further action.
- Sign petitions. If you absolutely can’t make a call, the next best thing is to sign petitions, such as this one, this one and this one, all posted on our Petitions, Petitions! page, which we update daily.
Sen. Orrin Hatch (202) 224-5251 (DC) // (801) 524-4380 (SLC) // (801) 375-7881 (Provo) // (435) 634-1795 (St. George) // (801) 625-5672 (Ogden) // (435) 586-8435 (Cedar City)
Sen. Mike Lee 202-224-5444 (DC) // 801-524-5933 (SLC) // 435-628-5514 (St. George) // 801-392-9633 (Ogden)
Rep. Rob Bishop (Congressional District 1): 202-225-0453 (DC) // 801-625-0107 (Ogden)
Rep. Chris Stewart (Congressional District 2): 202-225-9730 (DC) // 801-364-5550 (SLC) // 435-627-1500 (St. George)
Rep. Jason Chaffetz (Congressional District 3): (202) 225-7751 (DC) // (801) 851-2500 (UT)
Rep. Mia Love (Congressional District 4): (202) 225-3011 (DC) // 801-996-8729 (West Jordan)
Not sure who your U.S. Representative is? Check here.