Democrats' efforts to protect Mueller fail on the floor

Democrats' efforts to protect Mueller fail on the floor
© Anna Moneymaker

House Democrats' efforts to force a vote on a measure that would protect special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE was defeated on the floor Thursday. 

The Special Counsel Independence and Integrity Act, was introduced by House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Jerry NadlerJerrold (Jerry) Lewis NadlerDemocrats leave impeachment on the table House Judiciary chair to call on McGahn to testify before Congress Tim Ryan doesn't back impeachment proceedings against Trump MORE (D-N.Y.).

Democrats blasted the closed-rule process before attempting to file a motion to sidestep Republicans and bring the bill to the floor. 

The legislation comes as President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump calls Sri Lankan prime minister following church bombings Ex-Trump lawyer: Mueller knew Trump had to call investigation a 'witch hunt' for 'political reasons' The biggest challenge from the Mueller Report depends on the vigilance of everyone MORE is slated to speak with Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod Jay RosensteinEx-Trump lawyer: Mueller knew Trump had to call investigation a 'witch hunt' for 'political reasons' Mueller questioned by TV journalist over details of report Cummings: Barr acting like 'defense counsel' for Trump rather than AG MORE amidst rumors he will step down or be fired — a move Democrats feel could hinder Mueller’s probe into Russian election interference.

Rosenstein’s fate remains unclear following reports he discussed invoking the 25th Amendment and secretly recording Trump with administration officials.

Rosenstein denies the allegations. 

Conservatives have called for the deputy attorney general to testify under oath before the House Judiciary Committee and haven’t ruled out filing a privileged resolution forcing a vote on impeachment.

"President Trump and House Republicans’ recent efforts to ratchet up their campaign to undermine, interfere with and obstruct Mueller’s investigation warrant immediate action from Congress to protect the investigation into the Trump-Russia scandal," House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiTrump pushes back on impeachment talk: 'Tables are finally turning on the Witch Hunt!' Moulton enters 2020 White House race Trump takes aim at Dem talk of impeachment MORE’s (D-Calif.) office said in an announcement of their intention to file the motion. 

"President Trump has fired nearly every high-ranking official charged with investigating the Trump-Russia scandal. Now it appears that Rosenstein could be next – and it could happen as soon as today.  President Trump knows that the walls are closing around him." 

The measure would have codified the DOJ’s regulations on firing the special counsel, requiring the reasoning to be put in writing. It also would have provided a 10-day period in which a review of their removal could be reviewed. Under the legislation, all staff and materials would also be preserved while the investigation remained open.