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Trump to Sessions: Shut down Russia investigation before it 'stains U.S.'

"This is an attempt to obstruct justice hiding in plain sight," the top Democrat on the Senate intelligence committee answered.

By Ed Adamczyk
Trump to Sessions: Shut down Russia investigation before it 'stains U.S.'
President Donald Trump departs the White House for a trip to Florida on Tuesday. Wednesday, he assailed the Justice Department's Russia investigation and called for Attorney General Jeff Sessions to shut it down. Photo by Leigh Vogel/UPI | License Photo

Aug. 1 (UPI) -- President Donald Trump called on U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions Tuesday to shut down the Justice Department's special investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election, again calling the inquiry a "witch hunt."

Trump made the remark on Twitter and said Special Counsel Robert Mueller's months-long examination "rigged."

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Trump made three tweets expressing exasperation with the ongoing investigation, as well as FBI agent Peter Strzok's recent congressional testimony. He suggested Mueller is "creating the illusion of objectivity" and said his investigation is damaging the country.

"This is a terrible situation and Attorney General Jeff Sessions should stop this Rigged Witch Hunt right now, before it continues to stain our country any further," one tweet read.

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"Bob Mueller is totally conflicted, and his 17 Angry Democrats that are doing his dirty work are a disgrace to USA!"

Trump also touched on former campaign manager Paul Manafort, who is standing trial in Virginia on bank fraud charges.

"Paul Manafort worked for Ronald Reagan, [former Sen.] Bob Dole and many other highly prominent and respected political leaders," he wrote. "He worked for me for a very short time. Why didn't government tell me that he was under investigation. These old charges have nothing to do with Collusion -- a Hoax!"

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"Russian collusion with the Trump Campaign, one of the most successful in history, is a TOTAL HOAX," he continued. "The Democrats paid for the phony and discredited Dossier which was, along with Comey, McCabe, Strzok and his lover, the lovely Lisa Page, used to begin the Witch Hunt. Disgraceful!"

Mueller, the former director of the FBI and a registered Republican, took over the investigation after Sessions recused himself last year due to potential conflicts of interest. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, a Trump appointee, appointed Mueller to the case.

Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., the ranking Democrat on the House intelligence committee, called Trump's demand "an attempt to obstruct justice hiding in plain sight."

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"The President of the United States just called on his Attorney General to put an end to an investigation in which the President, his family and campaign may be implicated," he tweeted after Trump's remarks Wednesday. "This is an attempt to obstruct justice hiding in plain sight. America must never accept it."

Trump has called the investigation a "witch hunt" and a "hoax" on numerous prior occasions.

The top two Democrats in Congress answered Trump's tweet storm Wednesday.

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"The Mueller-Rosenstein investigation is making progress at record speed: 35 indictments, 5 guilty pleas & Trump's campaign chairman on trial," Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer tweeted. "Trump's statements this morning are just another attempt to make the American people look at his latest shiny object."

"Mr. President, the Commander-in-Chief has a duty to Protect Our Democracy - not to protect Putin," House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi wrote. "To quote the head of U.S. [intelligence chief] Dan Coats, our country is 'under attack.' It's time you started acting like it."

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