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GOP senator: Congress needs ‘to move on’ from Russia probe

Sen. Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonGOP senator seeking information on FBI dealings with Bruce Ohr, former DOJ lawyer Election Countdown: O'Rourke brings in massive M haul | Deal on judges lets senators return to the trail | Hurricane puts Florida candidates in the spotlight | Adelson spending big to save GOP in midterms Senate Homeland chair vents Mueller probe is preventing panel from receiving oversight answers MORE (R-Wis.) said early Thursday that it’s time to “move on” from the investigation into Russia’s election interference to other issues like the debt and deficit.

During an interview with CNN’s “New Day,” Johnson said the investigation should have ended “months ago.”

“We have enormous challenges. You talked about the debt and deficit. We need to move on with those things,” Johnson told host Chris Cuomo.

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The remarks from the Wisconsin senator come after Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyDems angered by GOP plan to hold judicial hearings in October American Bar Association dropping Kavanaugh review Clinton's security clearance withdrawn at her request MORE (R-Iowa) said he is moving forward with legislation aimed at protecting special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE from being fired by President TrumpDonald John TrumpFive takeaways from Cruz, O'Rourke's debate showdown Arpaio files libel suit against New York Times IMF's Christine Lagarde delays trip to Middle East MORE, despite opposition from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGraham: I hope Dems 'get their ass kicked' for conduct around Kavanaugh Saudi mystery drives wedge between Trump, GOP Overnight Defense: Trump worries Saudi Arabia treated as 'guilty until proven innocent' | McConnell opens door to sanctions | Joint Chiefs chair to meet Saudi counterpart | Mattis says Trump backs him '100 percent' MORE (R-Ky.). Mueller is investigating Moscow’s election meddling and any potential ties between Trump campaign staff members and the Kremlin.

In addition to Mueller, two Senate panels — the Intelligence and Judiciary committees — are also conducting probes into the 2016 election interference. The House Intelligence Committee ended its investigation last month, despite protest from Democrats.

Johnson said he would like to see the special counsel probe “come to a conclusion” and expressed uncertainty over whether a bill protecting Mueller would withstand legal challenges.

“I would question the constitutionality of that type of law, but I’ll cross that bridge when it actually comes to the Senate floor, if it does,” Johnson said.

The White House said last week that Trump believes he has the power to fire the special counsel, who reports not to him but to the Justice Department.

The president tried to ease fears of such an ouster on Wednesday. 

“They’ve been saying I’m going to get rid of them for the last three months, four months, five months, and they’re still here,” Trump said from his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.