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Mark Warner scoffs at Trump's threat of counter-probes

Sen. Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerWarner 'disappointed' in how Trump replaced Sessions Warner expresses concerns over potential future election meddling The Hill's Morning Report — Trump heads to Paris as attorney general controversy intensifies MORE (Va.), the highest-ranking Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, is dismissing President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump to oust Nielsen as early as this week: report California wildfire becomes deadliest in state’s history Sinema’s Senate win cheered by LGBTQ groups MORE's threats of retaliatory Senate investigations into House Democrats if they begin to probe him once they take the majority in January.

"I don't think the president can dictate to the Senate what to do to the House," Warner said in an interview with Hill.TV which will air in full Friday morning.

"If the Democrats think they are going to waste Taxpayer Money investigating us at the House level, then we will likewise be forced to consider investigating them for all of the leaks of Classified Information, and much else, at the Senate level. Two can play that game!" the president wrote on Twitter on Wednesday.

Warner scoffed at the idea that Trump could direct the Senate, which will remain under Republican control next year, to investigate the House.

"I'm not sure Mr. Trump understands that we're independent branches of government. And that the legislative branch was set up to be an appropriate check and balance on an executive," he said.

He called upon Trump to allow special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE to finish his investigation in the wake of Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsTrump to oust Nielsen as early as this week: report Acting AG will meet with DOJ ethics officials to discuss possible recusal: reports Swalwell calls acting AG an 'assassin' hired to 'take out' Mueller probe MORE's ouster on Wednesday, adding that he hoped the Department of Justice prosecutor would end his inquiry before 2019 begins.

"If the president is fearful about what the House may or may not do, and if he feels that there's no there there, then let's let the Mueller investigation finish," Warner said. "I hope he finishes very shortly. I hope that he would be done before the end of the year. So that we could get this information out, again, particularly before the change of power."

—Matthew Sheffield