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WATCH: Gardner, Bennet respond to Cohen, Manafort convictions; Mueller probe

Author: Next with Kyle Clark, 9News - August 23, 2018 - Updated: August 23, 2018

President Donald Trump and U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., exit Air Force One together on Tuesday, Aug. 21, 2018, during a trip to West Virginia to support a Republican candidate. (KUSA-9News, Denver)

Colorado’s congressional delegation is responding to Tuesday’s news that two of President Donald Trump’s previous allies — former campaign manager Paul Manafort and former attorney Michael Cohen — were convicted of various financial crimes.

U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colorado, who traveled with Trump Tuesday to West Virginia to rally for a Republican Senate candidate, says the convictions didn’t come up in the conversation. Gardner tagged along because he heads the committee to get Republican senators elected.

A Gardner spokesperson said Gardner’s support for the president wasn’t shaken by the convictions, or by the president’s attorney implicating him in court for criminal wrongdoing. But Gardner’s spokesman also made a point to say the senator supports Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation that led to those cases.

A Gardner spokesman told The Denver Post this:

Senator Gardner fully supported the appointment of Robert Mueller as special counsel and continues to do so. Based off of the public reporting he has seen, Senator Gardner believes the special counsel’s investigation has been conducted with the utmost integrity. These developments (Cohen’s and Manafort’s convictions) are the result of the Mueller investigation that Senator Gardner will continue to support.

Meanwhile, U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colorado, issued this statement:

Having had the privilege to work at the Justice Department earlier in my career, I find President Trump’s attacks on Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation disgraceful. (Tuesday’s) convictions of very serious crimes directly contradict the president’s characterization of this as a ‘witch hunt.’ The most important action Congress can take is to protect Mueller’s ability to gather all of the evidence and complete his investigation. It is the duty of Congress, and of every American, to defend the rule of law and the integrity of our law enforcement agencies.

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