McConnell: No one tells Burr how to run Intelligence panel

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellSenate gears up for battle over witnesses in impeachment trial McConnell: I doubt any GOP senator will vote to impeach Trump McConnell says he'll be in 'total coordination' with White House on impeachment trial strategy MORE (R-Ky.) sidestepped tensions within the caucus over Sen. Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrGOP senators request interview with former DNC contractor to probe possible Ukraine ties North Carolina congressman says he won't seek reelection after redistricting Senate passes bipartisan bill to permanently fund historically black colleges MORE's (R-N.C.) decision to subpoena Donald Trump Jr.Donald (Don) John TrumpMelania Trump's 'Be Best' hashtag trends after president goes after Greta Thunberg Trump Jr. blasts Time for choosing 'marketing gimmick' Greta Thunberg as Person of the Year White House calls Democratic witness's mentioning of president's youngest son 'classless' MORE, arguing that senators weren't trying to tell the Intelligence Committee chairman how to do this job.

"None of us tell Chairman Burr how to run his committee," McConnell told reporters on Tuesday when asked about the tensions within his caucus over the subpoena.

"I asked him to undertake this investigation into Russian collusion a couple of years ago. He's indicated publicly that he believes they will find no collusion and we are hoping that we will get a report sometime soon."

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Pressed on President TrumpDonald John TrumpSenate gears up for battle over witnesses in impeachment trial Vulnerable Democrats tout legislative wins, not impeachment Trump appears to set personal record for tweets in a day MORE's statement earlier Tuesday that the subpoena of his son was "unfair," McConnell again dodged. 

"I gave the responsibility of this investigation to Chairman Burr two years ago. He's indicated publicly that they will find no collusion and we anticipate getting that report sometime soon," he said.

Trump said earlier Tuesday that he thought it was "very unfair" for the Republican-led Senate Intelligence Committee to subpoena his eldest son.

“It’s really a tough situation because my son spent I guess over 20 hours testifying about something that [special counsel Robert] Mueller said was 100 percent OK,” Trump told reporters at the White House.

McConnell's statement comes amid lingering tensions among Senate Republicans over Burr and Democratic Sen. Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerTikTok chief cancels Capitol Hill meetings, inflaming tensions Watchdog report finds FBI not motivated by political bias in Trump probe Ex-Rep. Scott Taylor to seek old Virginia seat MORE's (Va.) decision to subpoena Trump Jr. as part of the panel's investigation into the 2016 election and Russia's election interference.

Burr has come under high-profile criticism, including from Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamSenators zero in on shadowy court at center of IG report Graham: People should be fired over surveillance report findings GOP, Trump campaign rip CNN for coverage of Horowitz hearing MORE (R-S.C.), who is plotting his own probe into the 2016 election. Graham argued that Trump Jr. should comply with the GOP-led panel's subpoena, but said the president's son should plead the Fifth and refuse to testify.

“You just show up and plead the Fifth and it’s over with,” Graham told reporters, referring to the amendment that protects citizens from self-incrimination, according to The Washington Post. Calls for Graham to resign began trending on Twitter Tuesday morning following his remarks. 

But McConnell has tried to downplay the tensions sparked by the subpoena, saying last week that Trump shouldn't worry about the current fight between Trump Jr. and the Senate Intelligence Committee.

"I know the president's upset about that, but I think he ought not to worry about it. The chairman of the Intelligence Committee has already said the committee, when it reports, will find no collusion," McConnell told WHAS, a Kentucky radio station.