Shaheen, Hassan say federal probe into Russian election interference should move quickly

  • Shaheen, Hassan at an event Monday.

For the Monitor
Monday, October 30, 2017

New Hampshire’s senior U.S. senator says she hopes that special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into whether Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign colluded with Russia before last year’s election moves “full speed ahead.”

Democrat Jeanne Shaheen spoke with the Monitor on Monday soon after Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, and Manafort’s former business associate Rick Gates were indicted and surrendered to federal authorities. The charges included conspiracy against the United States, money laundering, being an unregistered foreign agent and failure to file reports of foreign bank accounts.

The indictments could mean possible prison sentences for key former members of the Trump team including Manafort, who led the campaign during critical months, and Gates, a campaign aide.

Shaheen said that she was “pleased that Robert Mueller moved as fast as he did.”

“Hopefully the investigation will continue to proceed full speed ahead, and it’s disappointing to see that the person who was head of the Trump campaign for the winning of the nomination and for the period of time before he got discredited, that he has been indicted ... because of improper behavior and treasonous activities against the United States,” Shaheen added.

New Hampshire’s junior U.S. senator, fellow Democrat Maggie Hassan said that “we have to get to the bottom of any connections between Russia and the 2016 elections, whether Russia interfered with our 2016 elections. We also have to find out about any potential connections between that interference and the Russians and any associates of the president.”

Hassan emphasized that “it’s so important that special prosecutor Mueller have the full independence he needs to get to the bottom of things and follow the facts where ever they may lead.”

Sens. Shaheen and Hassan spoke with the Monitor minutes after teaming up at an event at the Manchester Community Health Center to highlight the Obamacare health insurance marketplace open enrollment period, which kicks off Wednesday.

(Material from the Associated Press was used in this report.)