Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX) caused a stir late Friday when he questioned the legitimacy of the investigation being conducted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller into potential Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
Cornyn spoke out via Twitter, in response to a tweet by former Attorney General Eric Holder, who defended Mueller against criticism and against efforts to urge the president to remove him from his post.
Speaking on behalf of the vast majority of the American people, Republicans in Congress be forewarned:any attempt to remove Bob Mueller will not be tolerated.These are BS attacks on him/his staff that are blatantly political-designed to hide the real wrongdoing. Country not party
— Eric Holder (@EricHolder) December 14, 2017
In response, Cornyn tweeted to Holder, “You don’t” (referring to Holder’s claim to be speaking “on behalf of the vast majority of the American people.”
He added later that “Mueller needs to clean house of partisans,” referring to reports that FBI agent Peter Strzok had been removed from the investigation due to anti-Trump texts, and that other lawyers on the Mueller team have expressed strongly anti-Trump feelings or supported the campaign of his 2016 opponent, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Later, asked by the Washington Post‘s in-house liberal columnist, Greg Sargent, whether he would accept the legitimacy of Mueller’s investigation, Cornyn suggested that would depend on the outcome:
Makes sense to me to wait to see what they are first https://t.co/9lCqpYujKN
— Senator JohnCornyn (@JohnCornyn) December 16, 2017
The left-wing HuffPost translated that remark as meaning that Cornyn would only consider the probe legitimate if “if Republicans like his findings.”
However, a more generous interpretation would be that Cornyn would wait to see if Mueller remained within his mandate, or used his sweeping powers to investigated unrelated matters.
On Sunday’s This Week with George Stephanopoulos on ABC News, Cornyn said that Trump should not fire Mueller.
— ABC News (@ABC) December 17, 2017
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named one of the “most influential” people in news media in 2016. He is the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.