Pelosi threatens to demand Mueller protection language in spending bill

House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiConstitutional conservatives need to oppose the national emergency House Judiciary Dems seek answers over Trump's national emergency declaration Why don't we build a wall with Canada? MORE (D-Calif.) says Democrats will demand that protections for special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE be included in a must-pass spending bill if GOP leaders fail to bring the legislation to the floor.

The Thursday threat comes on the heels of news that Michael Cohen, President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump nominates ambassador to Turkey Trump heads to Mar-a-Lago after signing bill to avert shutdown CNN, MSNBC to air ad turned down by Fox over Nazi imagery MORE’s former personal attorney, has entered into a plea agreement with Mueller and agreed to cooperate in the special counsel’s sprawling Russia probe. Cohen pleaded guilty to lying last year to congressional panels investigating Russian interference in the election.

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“The Congress must immediately pass legislation to preserve the Special Counsel investigation, which is identical to bipartisan legislation passed by the Senate Judiciary Committee," Pelosi said in a statement.

“If Speaker Ryan refuses to take up that bill, House Democrats will fight to include language to protect the investigation in the upcoming must-pass spending bill.”

Pelosi’s Senate counterpart, Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerHouse Judiciary Dems seek answers over Trump's national emergency declaration Mandatory E-Verify: The other border wall Trump says he 'didn't need to' declare emergency but wanted 'faster' action MORE (D-N.Y.), has been issuing similar threats ahead of Dec. 7 government funding deadline.

Trump and the GOP need the support of Democrats in the Senate to pass any legislation, though they don't require the cooperation of Democrats in the House.

Trump, meanwhile, is demanding $5 billion for his border wall in the spending package — far more than the $1.6 billion Democrats are willing to give up — which has further raised the prospects of a government shutdown next week.

Both House Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanUnscripted Trump keeps audience guessing in Rose Garden Coulter defends Paul Ryan: This is 100 percent Trump's fault The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Kidney Care Partners — Trump escalates border fight with emergency declaration MORE (R-Wis.) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGreen New Deal Resolution invites big picture governing ‘Contingency’ spending in 3B budget deal comes under fire Coulter defends Paul Ryan: This is 100 percent Trump's fault MORE (R-Ky.) have said legislation to protect the Russia probe are unnecessary — even after Trump fired Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsThe Hill's Morning Report — Presented by the American Academy of HIV Medicine — Trump, Congress prepare for new border wall fight The Memo: Trump and McCabe go to war McCabe book: Sessions once said FBI was better off when it 'only hired Irishmen' MORE and replaced him with acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker, who has been vocally critical of the Russia probe.

But retiring Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeTrump suggests Heller lost reelection bid because he was 'hostile' during 2016 presidential campaign Live coverage: Trump delivers State of the Union Sasse’s jabs at Trump spark talk of primary challenger MORE (R-Ariz.) has vowed to block all judicial nominations until the Senate considers a Mueller protection bill. Senate GOP leaders, seeking to diffuse the situation, said they would gauge support for the legislation.

Efforts by Flake to bring the bill to the Senate floor have been blocked thus far.