Faso, Maloney react to FBI director’s firing

Two congressmen from the mid-Hudson Valley have both suggested independent investigations into Russia’s election tampering in the wake of the firing Tuesday of FBI director James Comey by President Donald Trump.

Democratic Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney, who represents Orange County as part of the 18th Congressional District, compared Comey’s firing Tuesday the so-called Saturday Night Massacre.

“For the second time in U.S. history an American president has fired the Director of the FBI. It’s a Tuesday night massacre. This raises as many questions as it answers and the public deserves a real explanation from the President,” Maloney said in a statement.

The Saturday Night Massacre was when President Richard Nixon in 1973 accepted the resignations of the attorney general and deputy attorney general after they refused to fire the special prosecutor in the Watergate investigation. The solicitor general at the time finally obeyed Nixon’s order and fired the special prosecutor and dissolved the special prosecutor’s office.

“I only have two words – independent investigation,” Maloney said.

Rep. John Faso, a Kinderhook Republican who represents Ulster and Sullivan counties as part of the 19th Congressional District, called the firing in a statement Wednesday both “unsurprising and shocking.” He said if the new FBI director isn’t acceptable to both Democrats and Republicans in the Senate, an independent investigator should be called to takeover the ongoing investigation into Russia’s efforts to influence last year’s presidential election. Here’s Faso’s full statement:

“It is unsurprising in that his actions relating to the Clinton email matter caused major controversy on both sides of the political aisle. He appeared to assume a decision making position which would have been better left to his Justice Department superiors. His statements the other day before a congressional committee regarding Huma Abedin’s emails were perhaps the final misstep he has made in this regard.

“However, the firing was shocking in that the FBI has an ongoing investigation into Russian efforts to influence the US elections last year. The public must have absolute confidence that the FBI investigation will be thorough, and result in a complete resolution of that question regardless of the outcome. The facts must be known.

“Therefore it is incumbent upon the administration to nominate a new FBI director who will be someone of unquestioned integrity and experience, acceptable to both Republicans and Democrats in the Senate, to lead this critical agency on the Russian investigation and all other matters coming before it. If the nominee does not pass that test, then the only alternative in my view would be the selection of an independent investigator to get to the bottom of this matter once and for all.”


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