The top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee warned President Trump on Wednesday that any effort to dismiss Russian Federation special counsel Robert Mueller would amount to "a gross abuse of power".
While Warner, the top Democrat on the panel, has remained mum on the matter, he did make note of Stein's presence at the "infamous dinner" with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The transition team also argues that Mueller should have filtered out emails protected by executive privilege and attorney-client privilege, both of which can shield communications from being used against a defendant.
"In the United States of America, no one, no one is above the law, not even the president", Warner said.
A more brazen move, and one that is also the subject of much speculation, would be firing Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who now oversees the special counsel's investigation, and replacing him with an appointee who could subtly undermine it. Writing for NYU Law School's "Just Security" blog, Asha Rangappa argues that replacing Rosenstein would be more damaging to the investigation than firing Mueller. Mueller has been quick to remove people who have reacted to Trump seriously, in order to support objectivity.
In a floor speech Wednesday, Senate Intelligence Committee vice chairman Mark Warner, D-Va., accused House Republicans calling for Mueller's ouster of participating in a "seemingly coordinated" campaign to promote "baseless accusations" against Mueller's character and professionalism.
House Democrats had circulated rumours last week that Mr Trump would fire Mueller this Friday, just before the Christmas holiday.
GOP frustration over Mueller's probe has indeed intensified in recent weeks amid allegations of bias on his investigative team. Trump's unwillingness to dissociate himself from his most radical supporters was evident throughout the opening months of his presidency. Gen. Rod Rosenstein, who is the only official empowered to fire Mueller.
"I feel that more strongly today than even a year ago, and we don't even have near the tools that Robert Muller has in his investigation", Warner said.
But when a president creates a constitutional crisis, the difficulty of responding does not change the fact that the right response is the application of the constitutional remedy that the founders outlined. Over the past week, a series of senior Republicans have joined in the chorus of delegitimation, with a host of voices-from Mike Conaway, who leads the investigation of Trump's campaign on the House Intelligence Committee, to John Cornyn, who heads the Senate equivalent-insinuating that it is time to wrap up the special counsel's investigation.
A group of Republican members of the House Intelligence Committee have been meeting secretly to ferret out corruption they believe exists within the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Justice Department.
"I suspect there are some Republicans that may not want to pass [the bill]", said Sen. "If they pull on one of these threads as a reason to fire Mueller, I think it will be a political disaster for the president, and I believe it will be a constitutional crisis".