WASHINGTON – Americans in 99 congressional battleground districts – primarily represented by Republicans – would disapprove by a two-to-one margin if President Trump fires Russia special counsel Robert Mueller.
Lawmakers from both parties are increasingly concerned that Trump, who has railed against the investigation into possible collusion between his associates and Russians who sought to influence the presidential election, will fire Mueller.
The new poll of 1,000 adults by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner, provided to USA TODAY, found similar margins of disapproval for the possibility of Trump dismissing Mueller in 70 districts held by Republicans and 29 held by Democrats that may be competitive in the 2018 midterm elections.
According to the survey, 44% said they would “strongly” disapprove of Trump firing Mueller.
The public opinion polls are especially timely after reports Mueller, a former FBI director, is tapping a federal grand jury in Washington to advance his investigation, in a sign the probe is intensifying.
It remains unclear how Trump will react to the news, first reported on Thursday by The Wall Street Journal, though he has in recent weeks excoriated Attorney General Jeff Sessions for recusing himself in the Russia investigation. While Trump cannot fire Mueller directly, some lawmakers fear he is trying to remove Sessions and appoint a new attorney general without conflicts in the Russia investigation who could do something about the special counsel.
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