Independent Sen. Angus King told CNN on Wednesday morning that he thinks former FBI Director James Comey, who was fired by President Donald Trump on Tuesday night, should lead the Senate Intelligence Committee’s investigation into Russia’s election interference.
“I had a fun idea in the middle of the night,” King said. “I think our intelligence committee ought to hire James Comey to direct our investigation. Already has his clearances, knows the subject, man of integrity. I’m going to float that idea today and see what kind of reaction I get.”
“Would that be allowed?” CNN’s Chris Cuomo asked.
“I don’t know why not,” King replied. “He’s a free man as of today. He doesn’t have a job.”
King joined many of his colleagues in the House and Senate who are calling for Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to appoint a special counsel to oversee the FBI’s investigation into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia during the 2016 election.
“If they don’t have anything to hide, they ought to be cooperating with and helping with this,” King said. “This issue is going to dog them for years. It’s going to keep being a dark cloud over whatever they do. So I’m going to urge my colleagues to create a special prosecutor position. Otherwise, it will just keep going on.”
Republican Sen. Richard Burr, the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, stopped short of calling for a special counsel on Tuesday night. But he said he was “troubled by the timing and reasoning of Director Comey’s termination,” adding that Comey’s firing “further confuses an already difficult investigation by the Committee” into Trump’s Russia ties.
Democratic Sen. Mark Warner, the vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said in a statement on that Trump’s ” actions today make it clear to me that a Special Counsel must be appointed.” He called Trump’s decision “shocking and “deeply disturbing” and argued that appointing a special counsel was “the only way the American people will be able to trust the results of any DOJ investigation.”
More from Natasha Bertrand:
- The Trump-Russia probes are not going away — here are 6 things to watch as they move forward
- White House spokesperson: ‘It’s time to move on’ from the Trump-Russia probe
- Trump’s firing of Comey seems ‘suicidal’ — but it could ‘energize’ the Russia probe
- Sean Spicer calls Sally Yates a ‘political opponent’ in explaining why Trump ignored her advice
- James Clapper gave an intriguing answer when asked about Trump’s business ties to Russia
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