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Top Democrat warns Donald Trump firing Robert Mueller could provoke ‘constitutional crisis’

Click to play video: 'Top Democrat warns Trump firing Mueller would be ‘a gross abuse of power’' Top Democrat warns Trump firing Mueller would be ‘a gross abuse of power’
WATCH ABOVE: Senator Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, announced on the Senate floor that firing Mueller would be 'a gross abuse of power' – Dec 21, 2017

The top Democrat on the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee, responding to escalating Republican attacks on Special Counsel Robert Mueller, said on Wednesday that if President Donald Trump fires Mueller, it “has the potential to provoke a constitutional crisis.”

Speaking on the Senate floor, Senator Mark Warner denounced attacks on Mueller’s impartiality and said the special counsel’s investigation of ties between Trump’s presidential campaign and Russia must be “able to go on unimpeded.”

READ MORE: Donald Trump not considering firing Robert Mueller, angry over way special counsel obtained emails

Russia denies meddling in the 2016 U.S. election and Trump has denied any collusion.

WATCH: Trump allies say Robert Mueller unlawfully obtained emails

Click to play video: 'Trump allies say Robert Mueller unlawfully obtained emails' Trump allies say Robert Mueller unlawfully obtained emails
Trump allies say Robert Mueller unlawfully obtained emails – Dec 18, 2017

While Trump’s political allies have increased their criticism of Mueller, the president said on Sunday he was not considering firing him.

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Republican lawmakers have seized on anti-Trump texts by a Federal Bureau of Investigation agent who was involved in the Russia investigation as evidence of bias in Mueller’s team. Mueller removed the agent from his team after the texts came to light.

Republicans on several House of Representatives committees have also announced their own probes into long-standing political grievances, including the FBI’s handling of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server when she was secretary of state. Clinton, a Democrat, was Trump’s opponent in last year’s election.

“Over the last several weeks, a growing chorus of irresponsible voices have called for President Trump to shut down Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation,” said Warner, adding that the attacks were “seemingly coordinated.”

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President Trump celebrates first legislative victory with passing of tax reform bill – Dec 21, 2017

“Firing Mr. Mueller or any other of the top brass involved in this investigation would not only call into question this administration’s commitment to the truth, but also to our most basic concept of rule of law,” Warner said. “It also has the potential to provoke a constitutional crisis.”

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Warner called for Congress to make clear to the president that firing Mueller would have “immediate and significant consequences.”

House Democrats had circulated rumors last week that Trump would fire Mueller this Friday, just before the Christmas holiday.

Trump’s White House lawyer, Ty Cobb, said in a statement on Wednesday that the administration “willingly affirms yet again, as it has every day this week, there is no consideration being given to the termination of the special counsel.”

“If the media is going to continue to ask for responses to every absurd and baseless rumor, attention-seeking partisans will continue to spread them,” Cobb added.

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