Senators Tom Cotton, R-Ark., and Kelly Loeffler, R-Ga., have introduced a bill that would require at least a seven-year gap between the time a person serving as special prosecutor could investigate a president or presidential candidate and when that person could be appointed to a position by the Senate.
The Restore Integrity of Special Prosecutors Act would put in place a “cooling-off period” to get rid of the political motive for a person to investigate political rivals as a weapon.
“The Mueller investigation, General Flynn’s prosecution, and the initial sentencing memo of Roger Stone each reflect the danger of using political prosecutors in politically charged investigations,” Cotton said.
The bill was announced on the same day the House Judiciary Committee heard testimony from two whistleblowers who said Attorney General William Barr politicized the Department of Justice.
“Just this afternoon, the House Judiciary Committee hearing featured Mueller prosecutor Aaron Zelinsky—a prime example of a partisan prosecutor seeking favor with the Democratic Party. Our bill would restore public trust in future investigations by eliminating the opportunity for political gain in exchange for a partisan inquiry,” Cotton said.
Aaron Zelinsky, who worked on a team with special counsel Robert Mueller during the FBI’s investigation of Russian interference during the U.S. presidential election.
In one example of alleged bias, Zelinsky testified that the Department of Justice gave Republican strategist Roger Stone a favorable sentencing recommendation due to his friendship with President Donald Trump.
“Special counsels and their staffs are to pursue the truth with unwavering integrity,” Loeffler said. “As we’ve recently seen, that mission has been clouded by self-interest or political bias for some.”
Loeffler continued, “To prevent that from happening in the future, the Restore Integrity of Special Prosecutors Act will create a seven-year cooling-off period between an individual’s appointment to a special counsel investigation or prosecution and when that individual could be nominated to a Senate-confirmed position. I’m proud to cosponsor this legislation that seeks to re-establish public trust in our federal justice system.”