Incoming House judiciary chairman to reintroduce bill protecting Mueller

Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), who on Thursday is set to take over as the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, plans to reintroduce a bill to protect special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE, CNN reported.

The congressman intends to bring up the legislation on Thursday as the new Congress is sworn in, the news outlet reported. The bill would provide a layer of protection for the special counsel, allowing Mueller to challenge any move to fire him in court.

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Nadler introduced similar legislation in the last session of Congress, though his bill and other similar proposals did not advance in either chamber.

Bipartisan bills aimed at protecting Mueller were crafted in the Senate, but did not receive a vote. Outgoing Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeSchumer recruiting top-notch candidate for McCain Senate seat The Hill's Morning Report — Trump eyes wall money options as shutdown hits 21 days Poll: Sanders most popular senator, Flake least MORE (R-Ariz.) sought a vote on the legislation as his time wound down in Congress, but opposition from GOP leadership has blocked the bill from getting to the floor for a vote.

While Democrats have pushed for legislation that would provide recourse in the event that President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump claims media 'smeared' students involved in encounter with Native American man Al Sharpton criticizes Trump’s ‘secret’ visit to MLK monument Gillibrand cites spirituality in 2020 fight against Trump’s ‘dark’ values MORE moves to dismiss the special counsel, Republicans have largely downplayed the need for such a measure.

Trump regularly derides the Mueller investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and possible collusion between the Kremlin and the Trump campaign as a "witch hunt," and has insisted he did not collude with Russia. The New York Times has reported on multiple instances where Trump wanted to have Mueller fired.

Mueller's investigation has thus far implicated five former Trump associates and more than 20 Russian nationals.