Sen. Richard Blumenthal, a Connecticut Democrat who serves on the Senate Judiciary and Armed Services committees, said Tuesday that the country is in a “Watergate moment” and “we need bipartisanship now more than ever to protect the special counsel.”
Michael Cohen, Trump’s former personal attorney and fixer, pleaded guilty in federal court Tuesday to eight criminal counts of campaign finance violations, tax fraud and bank fraud and admitted he had acted to keep information that would have been harmful to Trump’s campaign from becoming public during the 2016 presidential election.
“They could not accept Michael Cohen’s plea agreement unless they believe Michael Cohen,” Blumenthal told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on “The Situation Room,” “which means they have evidence to corroborate it.”
Blumenthal said the Senate Judiciary Committee needs to conduct its own investigation.
“We’re in a Watergate moment. We need bipartisanship now more than ever to protect the special counsel and to stop, and I must underscore stop, any consideration of pardons,” Blumenthal said.
Also, Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign chairman, was found guilty of eight counts of financial crimes on Tuesday.
“We’re likely to see a firestorm of resistance from the President of the United States,” Blumenthal said.
If Trump did pardon Manafort, “He would be screaming to the world, ‘I am guilty!’ And he would so undermine the credibility of his office that it would be a disaster for the nation,” Blumenthal said.
“It would very possibly be an obstruction of justice because he would be misusing that power to protect himself as a target of that investigation,” he said.