Legislative Session

Floor Speech

Date: May 10, 2017
Location: Washington, DC


Mr. McCONNELL. Mr. President, one final matter, whatever one thinks of the manner in which Director James Comey handled the investigation into Secretary Clinton's unauthorized use of a private server and her mishandling of classified information, it is clear what our Democratic colleagues thought of it--both at that time and consistently thereafter.

Last year, the current Democratic leader said it appeared to be an ``appalling act,'' one that he said ``goes against the tradition of prosecutors at every level of government,'' and the prior Democratic leader, when asked if James Comey should resign given his conduct of the investigation, replied ``[o]f course, yes.''
It is also clear what our Democratic colleagues think of the man who evaluated Mr. Comey's professional conduct and concluded that the Bureau needed a change in leadership. The Democratic leader just a few weeks ago praised Mr. Rosenstein for his independence and said he had developed a reputation for integrity.
What we have now is our Democratic colleagues complaining about the removal of an FBI Director whom they themselves repeatedly and sharply criticized; that removal being done by a man, Rod Rosenstein, whom they repeatedly and effusively praised--when Mr. Rosenstein recommended Mr. Comey's removal for many of the very reasons they consistently complained about.

Two investigations are currently ongoing: The Senate Intelligence Committee's review of Russian active measures and intelligence activities and the FBI investigation disclosed by Director Comey.

Today we will no doubt hear calls for a new investigation, which could only serve to impede the current work being done to not only discover what the Russians may have done but also to let this body and the national security community develop the countermeasures and warfighting doctrine to see that it doesn't occur again. Partisan calls should not delay the considerable work of Chairman Burr and Vice Chairman Warner. Too much is at stake.

Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein was just confirmed on a bipartisan vote, 94 to 6--94 to 6--and that sort of fair consideration should continue when the Senate receives an FBI Director nominee. As I said yesterday, once the Senate receives a nomination to fill this position, we will look forward to a full, fair, and timely confirmation process.

This is a critical role that is particularly important as our country continues to face serious threats at home and abroad.