Sen. Tom Cotton expects Congress to look into allegations that the State Department wrongfully engaged in a "pay-for-play" scheme by giving special access to Clinton Foundation donors, once lawmakers return in September.

The Arkansas Republican said it was especially important to have issues related to the foundation cleared up before the election, and said it would be hard for a meaningful investigation to take place if Hillary Clinton were to become president.

"Given the Clintons' long and somewhat checkered history with the FBI, I have reservations, not about the FBI's willingness to investigate, but a Clinton White House's attempt to interfere with the Department of Justice and the FBI and stymie their efforts," Cotton said in a Friday interview.

"I hope it can be resolved before the election, and certainly before the next president takes office," he said. "There are clearly some indications of potential criminal wrongdoing that the FBI should pursue without undue influence from [Attorney General] Loretta Lynch or political appointees within the Department of Justice."

Allegations that Clinton lieutenants fostered a pay-for-play culture at the department while Clinton ran it have ramped up this week amid revelations that top aide Huma Abedin actively lobbied Clinton on behalf of foundation donors.

New records reveal that at least 85 of 154 people Clinton met with outside government during her time at State donated or pledged contributions totaling at least $156 million. Critics have argued the activity could constitute a violation of federal RICO laws, the anti-corruption statutes originally passed to combat the Mafia.

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The Clintons recently pledged to stop accepting foreign contributions for the foundation in the event Hillary Clinton wins the presidential election. Critics said it amounted to a warning that foreign interests should send contributions while it was still possible. Cotton garnered headlines for describing it as a "fire sale" and calling for the contributions to end immediately.

"I am a recovering attorney," Cotton said to the prospect of a RICO investigation. "I've been clean for twelve years. So I will not opine on the specifics. But I do think there are some indicators of impropriety at a minimum in the Clinton Foundation's behavior and Hillary Clinton's interactions, along with those of her senior aides, and senior advisors to Bill Clinton, that warrant further scrutiny by the FBI and congressional committees."

"That needs to be thorough and neutral and partisan," Cotton said. "I expect Congress will be looking into these matters when we return to session next month, and I hope the FBI is as well."