Coons after Russia probe: House Dems need to use power in focused and responsible way

Sen. Christopher CoonsChristopher (Chris) Andrew CoonsThe United States broken patent system is getting worse Biden faces scrutiny for his age from other Democrats Democrats press FBI for details on Kavanaugh investigation MORE (D-Del.) on Saturday said that House Democrats must use their oversight power "in a focused and a responsible way" as they go forward with investigations involving President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump watching 'very closely' as Portland braces for dueling protests WaPo calls Trump admin 'another threat' to endangered species Are Democrats turning Trump-like? MORE, cautioning to not "overdo it."

Coons, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, made the remarks a day after special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerTrump calls for probe of Obama book deal Democrats express private disappointment with Mueller testimony Kellyanne Conway: 'I'd like to know' if Mueller read his own report MORE submitted his highly anticipated report to Attorney General William Barr, marking the end of the nearly two-year investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election that has dominated much of Trump's presidency.

"We have to be careful to use the resources and the abilities of the House majority in a focused and a responsible way," Coons said on CNN's "Smerconish." "We need to focus on things that are relevant and matter to the average American."


The senator said he agrees with Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiAre Democrats turning Trump-like? Pelosi hits Trump, Netanyahu for 'weakness' amid tensions over Omar and Tlaib In Hong Kong, the need for peaceful persistence MORE (D-Calif.) that Democrats need to be able to explain what they are investigating. Pelosi said earlier this week that impeaching Trump is "not worth it" without bipartisan support. 

"I support Speaker Pelosi’s view that we ought to be able to explain what we’re investigating and why," he said. "There are lots of issues that we’ve known over the last two years, whether it’s Trump’s taxes and the allegations of some impropriety there or it’s ways in which his decisionmaking and policy is unpredictable or even inappropriate." 

"There’s plenty of things for us to be debating in terms of policy, and there are a few things that deserve focused and ongoing investigation. We should not overdo it," he added.

Coons, who is among those seeking reelection in 2020, said that in light of the upcoming elections, Democrats should focus on issues beyond certain investigations.

"The question the average American is going to ask is not about any of these investigations," he said. "They’re going to ask, 'What would you do, Democratic party, that would make a difference in my life?'"

Coons is set to host a conference call on Mueller's report later Saturday morning.

Since taking over the House majority, Democrats have used their committee powers to launch sprawling investigations into Trump, his administration and his finances. The Judiciary Committee in particular has requested documents from 81 people and entities in a far-reaching probe. 

Updated: March 23 at 6 p.m.