US Republicans worry Donald Trump's scandals may doom legislative agenda

Trump is reeling from a bombshell report in the New York Times that he asked former FBI Director James Comey to drop a probe into ex-National Security Adviser Michael Flynn. Hours after Ryan's announcement, the committee's chairman, Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, tweeted that he has already scheduled a public hearing for next week into the matter and will ask Comey to testify.

"If the Federal Bureau of Investigation director's been keeping memos on meetings with everybody and he doesn't run the Department of Justice". Keefe, Bruyette & Woods analysts Brian Gardner and Michael Michaud write in a note that they believe tax reform "continues to have a pulse if for no other reason than Republicans will be desperate for a political victory". "I think the president deserves a chance".

This may change. Perhaps there will be a new scandal so enormous as to drive Republican lawmakers from Mr Trump in droves.

Risch insisted the "real story" is leaks coming out of the administration. "They've committed treason and ought to go to prison".

But so far, those defections seem to represent isolated occurrences, and the broader Republican caucus has for the most part simply expressed concern over Trump's behavior. Then, the Democrats controlled Congress, wherein lies the power to impeach; now, the Republicans do-and no Congress has ever moved to dislodge a president of the same party as its majority tribe.

"President Trump is not above the law", Green stated in a press release on his website.

The surest sign that the bottom is falling out from under Trump was a Wall Street Journal editorial that declared flatly: "Presidencies can withstand only so much turbulence before they come apart".

In GOP Rep. Barry Loudermilk's Georgia district, Trump won with 60 percent of the vote. "I say to all of my colleagues in the Senate, history is watching". "So that alone sometimes calls into question nearly all of these discussions", said Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz.

Upon being appointed to head the Russian Federation probe he immediately resigned from the position to avoid a potential conflict of interest, but a spokesperson for the firm told legal blog Lawfare that he had never had anything to do with these clients.

"I think that that is classic - you know, in social media what we would call - classic Russian "trolling" of the United States and of this administration in particular". For many of these lawmakers, the potential for a conservative primary opponent is greater than any threat from a Democrat.

There's also the issue of the GOP agenda.

However, a trust crisis is looming large if the White House can't control damage soon. McConnell and other leaders are convinced that if they don't deliver, voters will punish them at the polls in the 2018 midterm elections.

Under this vague definition, a prosecutor could "probably put together an incredible case" against Mr Trump, said Julie O'Sullivan, a professor at the Georgetown University Law Centre.

House Speaker Paul Ryan insisted on Thursday that Congress will overhaul the USA tax system this year despite the chaos consuming Washington and the political divisions in Congress. The people who "rock the domestic political situation in the US" under the guise of anti-Russian slogans are "either stupid or risky", the Russian president said.

But while some Democrats, and Trump's opponents in general, might be clamoring for an impeachment, it isn't as simple as Democrats deciding they don't like him.

"We owe it to the American people to find out what happened, and I'm encouraged to see that the justice department has appointed a special counsel to lead the investigation into Russia's interference in the 2016 election", Indian-American Congressman Ami Bera said.

Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) supported the letter from Grassley and Feinstein. But the White House has provided differing accounts of the firing.

"There's clearly a lot of politics being played", Ryan said.

For intelligence and counter-terrorist officials in the room, the disclosure immediately raised a bright red flag. "But we're still getting things done".



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