ST. PAUL, Minn. — Though President Donald Trump lost Minnesota by a mere two points in November, Minnesota politicians have decided to voice their opposition against recent decisions made by the administration.
On Wednesday, Rep. Erik Paulsen followed in the steps of his fellow Democratic Minnesota politicians in calling for a special prosecutor to investigate the Russian ties to the 2016 election.
“Maintaining public trust in the integrity of our elections as well as our institutions, such as the FBI, is of the utmost importance,” said Paulsen. “For 10 months, the FBI has been investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election. The extraordinary decision to fire Director Comey definitely raises questions which must be answered. I believe these circumstances call for an independent investigation that the American people can trust with confidence.”
Paulsen joins Minnesota Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken and Minnesota Reps. Keith Ellison, Tim Walz, and Betty McCollum in calling for a special prosecutor.
Walz, who also announced his candidacy for governor of Minnesota said in a prepared statement:
“As I called for back in February, we immediately need a special prosecutor to ensure an independent investigation into the Putin-ordered Russian attack on our democracy, including but not limited to any relevant ties between anyone associated with then-Candidate Donald Trump and Russia,” Walz said. “Last Wednesday, Director Comey warned us that Russia presents ‘the greatest threat of any nation on Earth’ to our democratic process. Given his abrupt firing today by the President, our most urgent and existential questions remain. Did this White House coordinate with a foreign government to win an election?”
Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson joined 19 other attorney generals in the country demanding a special prosecutor.
According to a letter sent to leading members of the House and Senate Intelligence Committees:
“We view the President’s firing of FBI Director James Comey in the middle of his investigation of Russian interference in the presidential election as a violation of the public trust,” the AG’s write. “The residents of our states and the American people deserve a thorough investigation that makes clear the extent of Russian meddling, any collusion by Trump campaign officials, and any cover-up. Only the appointment of an independent special counsel, pursuant to 28 CFR § 600.1, with full powers and resources, can begin to restore public confidence. We urge you to appoint a special counsel immediately.”
The statements follow Trump’s sudden decision to fire FBI Director James Comey earlier this week.
Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon also shared his frustrations with Trump. His frustrations stem from the president’s executive order that would create a commission that would look into voter fraud.
“Both individuals have an interest in steering the commission toward their pre-determined conclusions and outcomes,” Simon states in a press release. “I fear the worst. The commission risks becoming a partisan tool to shut out millions of eligible American voters. Fortunately, Minnesota has rigorous safety measures in place before, on, and after Election Day to ensure our elections are fair and secure. We know that Minnesotans have confidence in the integrity of our system because our voters just returned us to number one in voter turnout in America.”