We all need to protect the investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller into the Russian interference in U.S. elections. “It is imperative that Special Counsel Robert Mueller be allowed to complete his investigation into Russian influence efforts during the 2016 elections.” This is a quote from Sen. Susan Collins — and we agree with her.

Until now the investigation has been supported under Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s authority. The president’s decision to place Matthew Whitaker as the acting attorney general has many leaders concerned. According to reports in The New York Times, Whitaker is a “partisan defender” who has publically insisted there was no collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign. Whitaker is a vocal Trump ally and loyalist. In the role as acting attorney general, Whitaker has the authority to intervene at any time to stop funding and limit who Mueller may investigate. Whitaker has failed to recuse himself from this authority.

We deserve an attorney general who maintains critical thinking and neutrality until the investigation is complete. We deserve to know the full extent of the Russian interference so that we can close all access and protect our voting systems. We deserve to have prosecuted any American who participated in illegal acts that may have undermined our electoral system. We deserve to have restored faith in the traditional United States system of checks and balances. Congress should enact legislation that protects the Special Counsel investigation, including its budget and its staff, until the investigation is complete. It is only then that the court system in the United States can do the job of sorting out the criminals, the foreign invaders and the traitors from the rest of us.

Debbie Mattson

On behalf of the Kennebec Advocacy Team

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