Graham confident there will be 'no political influence' put on Mueller by Whitaker

Graham confident there will be 'no political influence' put on Mueller by Whitaker
© Greg Nash

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamSenate braces for a nasty debt ceiling fight Bipartisan group says it's still on track after setback on Senate floor How Sen. Graham can help fix the labor shortage with commonsense immigration reform MORE (R-S.C.) said Sunday that he's confident that acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker will assert "no political influence" on special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerSenate Democrats urge Garland not to fight court order to release Trump obstruction memo Why a special counsel is guaranteed if Biden chooses Yates, Cuomo or Jones as AG Barr taps attorney investigating Russia probe origins as special counsel MORE's investigation despite his past criticism of the investigation.

"I am confident the Mueller investigation will be allowed to come to a good, solid conclusion — that there will be no political influence put on Mr. Mueller by Mr. Whitaker to do anything other than Mr. Mueller’s job. I’m confident that Mr. Mueller will allowed to do his job without interference," Graham said on CBS's "Face the Nation."

President TrumpDonald TrumpNew Capitol Police chief to take over Friday Overnight Health Care: Biden officials says no change to masking guidance right now | Missouri Supreme Court rules in favor of Medicaid expansion | Mississippi's attorney general asks Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade Michael Wolff and the art of monetizing gossip MORE last week appointed Whitaker as acting attorney general after forcing the resignation of Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsDemocrat stalls Biden's border nominee Garland strikes down Trump-era immigration court rule, empowering judges to pause cases Unsealed documents detail Trump and Biden efforts on reporter records MORE.

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Democrats have voiced concern that Whitaker may try to interfere with or end Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. Whitaker, who in his new role oversees that investigation, previously said the investigation had "gone too far" and once suggested that a new attorney general should reduce funding for the investigation.

Graham on Sunday also dismissed the idea that, given those past comments, Whitaker should recuse himself from the investigation.

“You don’t recuse somebody because they have opinions different than the people they’re overseeing. Trust me, there’s politics abounds when it comes to the Mueller investigation that Trump’s guilty no matter what Mueller finds," he said.

"The bottom line here that Mr. Mueller will be allowed to do his job without political interference by Whitaker. Mr. Whitaker, I think, is legally qualified and otherwise qualified to oversee this investigation until a new attorney general is appointed, and I think that will happen early next year," Graham added.