AP NEWS

Denny Heck: Donald Trump refusing to meet with special counsel will lead to ‘constitutional crisis’

February 6, 2018

Rep. Denny Heck said Tuesday that if President Trump refuses to meet with special counsel Robert Mueller, it will led to a “constitutional crisis.”

“What I predicted last week, was that we are inching towards a constitutional crisis, and this would definitely be a step in that direction. It would certainly turn the temperature way up,” Mr. Heck, Washington Democrat, said on MSNBC.

Mr. Heck a member of the House Intelligence Committee also reacted to the release of the Republican memo and looming release of a Democratic memo, concerning alleged abuses in the intelligence system regarding surveillance.

The dueling memos concern FISA warrants issued for Trump campaign aides. The Republican memo was publicly released Friday and argued that the unverified dossier backed by the Democratic Party was used to issue the warrants. Democrats say their memo clarifies misleading information in the Republican document, adding that Republicans’ actions are an attempt to discredit Mr. Mueller’s Russia probe.

“We didn’t favor either memo being made public. We didn’t think it was in the best interest of our nation or national security interests,” Mr. Heck said.

He said that once the committee approved the release of the Republican memo, however, Democrats felt they needed to release their own to clarify what they see as misleading information. He said Democrats submitted their draft to the intelligence community to review before it can be publicly released.

“Democrats voluntarily submitted their memorandum to the intelligence community for a review to make sure that it did not do anything that would be of harm, and the Republican majority refused to do that,” Mr. Heck said.

Republicans, however, say that the Democrats did not submit their memo to the FBI as Republicans did, and that the Democratic memo has far more sensitive information about sources and methods of intelligence gathering than their memo does.