Author: Rohan Malpure Date: 5-16-17
James Clapper, the former U.S. intelligence chief from 2010-2017, warned that American democracy is “under assault” on separate fronts from President Trump and Russia. Clapper also expressed dismay over Trump’s abrupt firing of FBI director James Comey. The firing came amidst a probe into Russian interference in American elections and possible links to the Trump campaign.
“I think, in many ways, our institutions are under assault, both externally — and that’s the big news here, is the Russian interference in our election system,” Clapper, the former director of national intelligence. “I think as well our institutions are under assault internally.”
Clapper made the comments on Sunday to Jake Tapper during the CNN show State of the Union.
Trump is currently looking to find a successor for Comey. Lawmakers from both parties have urged him to stay away from politicians. Senator Mike Lee (R- Utah) has pushed for Merrick Garland, the federal judge that then-President Barack Obama nominated to fill Antonin Scalia’s spot on the Supreme Court. That spot was eventually filled by Trump’s pick, Neil Gorsuch.
Clapper is currently making the media circuit. He is speaking out about his concern about how government institutions are being undermined and assaulted. When asked by Tapper if America was being internally assaulted by the President, Clapper responded with “Exactly.”
Last week, Clapper testified in front of the Senate Judiciary subcommittee and talked about Michael Flynn. Though he had previously said that there was no proof of collusion between the White House and Russia, he said during the hearing that he was unaware of the ongoing FBI investigation, so he could not have been in a position to know of any possible proof.