Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) told the Trump administration Tuesday that he would no longer be in the running for the FBI director position.
Although Cornyn’s pursuit of the high-ranking vacancy left by Comey may have come as a surprise to his colleagues, Attorney General Jeff Sessions had reportedly encouraged him to consider it and help “restore stability to the FBI,” according to numerous reports.
Sessions later interviewed Cornyn for the job the Saturday following James Comey’s dismissal, which did not sit well with some Republicans, who argued Trump should steer clear of appointing a current politician as speculation continues to swirl about the Trump campaign conspiring with Russia to influence the outcome of the election.
The Texan issued the following statement about his decision to remove himself from consideration:
“I have always considered public service to be a great privilege. How I can best serve my fellow Texans and my country has, and will continue to be, my guiding principle,” Cornyn said.
“Now more than ever the country needs a well-credentialed, independent FBI Director. I’ve informed the Administration that I’m committed to helping them find such an individual and that the best way I can serve is continuing to fight for a conservative agenda in the U.S. Senate,” he added.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) told NBC’s “Meet the Press” over the weekend that “John Cornyn is a wonderful man. Under normal circumstances, would be a superb choice to be FBI director.” He added, “But these are not normal circumstances. We’ve got a chance to reset here as a nation.”
At least seven other candidates have interviewed with Justice Department officials and Trump has stated they are acting “very rapidly” to fill the new FBI director position.
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