Manchin Pleads With Trump Not to #ReleaseTheMemo

Says firing special counsel Mueller would be the ‘absolute wrong thing’

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., said it would be wrong for President Donald Trump to release the House Intelligence Committee’s memo on the Russia probe. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin on Wednesday urged President Donald Trump not to release a memo compiled by Republicans about alleged abuses by the FBI in the Russia investigation.

The Democrat has occasionally voted to confirm Trump’s nominees and hails from a state that voted overwhelmingly for the president.

But Manchin told CBS News that it would be “wrong” to release the memo Republicans assembled that is critical of the FBI and its investigation into Trump’s campaign.

“I would definitely say, Mister President, please don’t do that, that is wrong, it is absolutely wrong,” Manchin said. “The Senate Intelligence Committee is the only thing we have left that can put confidence into the system and also into the investigation.”

Watch: The State of the Union in 3 Minutes

Manchin, who recently announced his run for re-election, said it would be a mistake to fire special counsel Robert S. Mueller III as The New York Times last week reported that Trump had considered. 

“I pray to God that doesn’t happen for the sake of our country, and I would say for the presidency and his administration that would be the absolute wrong thing,” he told CBS. 

Manchin said that the Senate would coalesce to protect Mueller.

Still, Manchin had some positive words for Trump’s State of the Union address Tuesday night, particularly when the president spoke about clean coal and the opioid crisis.

“There’s so much we need to do, John,” he told host John Dickerson. “And just to sit there and frown is not going to fix anything, so let’s embrace each other and try to make it work, and when we disagree we can work through that.”

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