In the midst of former FBI Director James Comey‘s much anticipated testimony on Capitol Hill, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WIS) stood alongside House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) before a gaggle of reporters and joked that they decided to take some questions since “there’s nothing going on” in Washington. But as the questions opened up, the levity soon took a backseat.
According to the Washington Post, Ryan offered an eye-opening defense of President Trump in regards to Comey’s 7-page statement he released in advance of his testimony.
“People now realize why the president is so frustrated when the FBI director tells him on three different occasions he is not under investigation, yet the speculation swirls around the political system that he is — that’s frustrating,” Ryan said.
“I would just say that of course there needs to be a degree of independence between [the Department of Justice], FBI and the White House and a line of communications established,” Ryan continued. “The president’s new at this. He’s new to government, and so he probably wasn’t steeped in the long-running protocols that establish the relationships between DOJ, FBI and White Houses. He’s just new to this.”
When pressed on whether or not his assessment was an excuse for the President’s behavior, Ryan said this:
“I’m not saying it’s an acceptable excuse. It’s just my observation.”
Featured image via Gage Skidmore (Flickr)