GOP senator: Shutdown would be 'stupid,' 'grave mistake' for Dems to add Mueller bill to spending bill

GOP senator: Shutdown would be 'stupid,' 'grave mistake' for Dems to add Mueller bill to spending bill
© Greg Nash

Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) said Monday that it would be a "grave mistake" for Democrats to attempt to add legislation protecting special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerMueller report fades from political conversation Trump calls for probe of Obama book deal Democrats express private disappointment with Mueller testimony MORE to a spending bill as Congress attempts to prevent a government shutdown.

"That very well could lead to a government shutdown," Kennedy said, adding that a shutdown "would be stupid," according to CNN

Funding for several agencies is set to lapse on Dec. 7. 

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Senate Democrats have said they will push a spending bill to include language that protects Mueller from being fired without just cause if Republican leadership refuses to schedule the protection bill for a stand-alone floor vote.

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerJewish Democratic congresswoman and veteran blasts Trump's 'disloyalty' comments Schumer says Trump encouraging anti-Semites Saagar Enjeti: Biden's latest blunder; Krystal Ball: Did Schumer blow our chance to beat McConnell? MORE (D-N.Y.) has pushed for such legislation, with some bipartisan support. Outgoing Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) has said he supports adding the Mueller protection to the spending bill and has also said he plans to oppose Trump's judicial nominees until such legislation is voted on.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellDavid Axelrod after Ginsburg cancer treatment: Supreme Court vacancy could 'tear this country apart' Pelosi asks Democrats for 'leverage' on impeachment Democrats press FBI, DHS on response to white supremacist violence MORE (R-Ky.) has said he opposes the legislation, saying that it's unnecessary because Mueller and his investigation aren't in danger. 

The push for such legislation comes after President TrumpDonald John TrumpDavid Axelrod after Ginsburg cancer treatment: Supreme Court vacancy could 'tear this country apart' EU says it will 'respond in kind' if US slaps tariffs on France Ginsburg again leaves Supreme Court with an uncertain future MORE earlier this month appointed Matthew Whitaker as acting attorney general after former Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsA better way to run the Federal Bureau of Prisons Trump admin erases key environmental enforcement tool DOJ should take action against China's Twitter propaganda MORE resigned at the president’s request on Nov. 7.

Whitaker, who now oversees Mueller's probe, has expressed doubt about the necessity of the special counsel's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, writing in an op-ed for CNN last year that the probe had "gone too far."