Republican Sen. Thom Tillis distanced himself from President Trump assertion that the federal investigation looking into possible ties between his campaign and Russia is a "witch hunt."

The senator from North Carolina said on ABC's "This Week" that "I'm not sure I agree with the witch hunt, and we'll let the facts lead us to whether or not it was a hoax or a distraction."

Tillis introduced one of two bills which aim to protect special counsel Robert Mueller from being fired.

"This is a distraction I'd like to get past" and "go back to supporting the president's agenda," Tillis said.

Tillis said he doesn't believe the investigations are eroding relations between the U.S. and Russia -- which instead can be pinned on other issues. "The only reason we have bad relations with Russia is Russia's doing bad things," Tillis said.