Tuesday on MSNBC, Rep. Francis Rooney (R-FL) described the FBI and the Department of Justice as “off the rails” and suggested the possibility of a “purge” at the FBI and the Department of Justice.
Partial transcript as follows:
JACKSON: Before I let you go, I need to ask you about the president and his tweets. He’s been fairly quiet Christmas day, but the president is tweeting about the FBI. He’s been tweeting about his Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, why is that the right message right now for Donald Trump and Republicans?
ROONEY: Well, there’s two issues here. Yes, the president does have his own unique communication style, which I don’t think any of us have seen the use of Twitter deployed so broadly as a president does. But on the investigation, that investigation is totally off the rails. And I am really concerned —
JACKSON: But he’s not tweeting about the investigation. He is tweeting about the deputy director. He’s tweeting about FBI agents. Congressman, do you think that is appropriate for the president?
ROONEY: I’m very concerned that the DOJ and the FBI, whether you want to call it deep state or what, are kinda off the rails. When you look at what the Strzok guy was texting, you look at that Ohr guy talking to the dossier Clinton op research people, and the McCabe guy’s wife takes $600,000 from Clinton-related sources while running for state senator.
JACKSON: Congressman, you just called the FBI and the DOJ off the rails, something that you’re okay with talking about here? How does that not sort of undermine the work that the agencies are doing?
ROONEY: I think the American people have very high standards for our government agencies and to see people like these—
JACKSON: Are the agencies not living up to the standards?
ROONEY: Well, those aforementioned examples are really nerve-racking to me and undermine my confidence that the agencies don’t respect the Constitution and will not put the ends before the means.
JACKSON: That’s a pretty broad brush you’re painting with.
ROONEY: Yeah, but we have seen a lot of ends-before-the-means culture, both out of the Obama administration and out of Hillary Clinton, with her $84 million dollars of potentially illegal campaign contributions or the Clinton Foundation, Uuranium One. People need a good, clean government.
JACKSON: Do you think people don’t have a good, clean government? I have to let you go, but the point I’m trying to get at, the ones looking at the comments you’re making and say Republicans are working to essentially trying to discredit the Department of Justice and thus discredit the Russia investigations. Is that not what you’re doing?
ROONEY: No, I don’t want to discredit them. I would like to see the directors of the agencies purge it. And say, look, we have a lot of great agents, a lot of great lawyers here, those are the people I want the American people to see and know the good work is being done, not these people who are kind of the deep state.
JACKSON: Language like that, Congressman, purge. Purge the Department of Justice?
ROONEY: Well, I think that Mr. Strzok could be purged, sure.
(h/t The Hill)
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