Manchin: Comey Firing ‘Not Going To Impede’ Senate Intel Investigation

UNITED STATES - APRIL 7: Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., talks with reporters before the Senate voted to confirm Neil Gorsuch as the next Supreme Court justice, April 7, 2017. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
Tom Williams/CQPHO

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said Tuesday that President Donald Trump’s abrupt firing of FBI Director James Comey would not impede that committee’s investigation into potential collusion between Trump associates and Russia.

“I just heard about it walking to the interview with you,” Manchin told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer.

“At first blush I will just tell you, it is not going to impede our investigation in finding out where the Intel Committee basically is going to get its information,” he continued. “We still look forward to Mr. Comey coming before us the same as we do Sally Yates coming before us, so that will not change our investigation, and basically we’ve always said this: We will follow the intel and intel will take us with the facts and that will lead us to the truth.”

Blitzer asked Manchin if Comey’s firing recalled a “Saturday Night Massacre,” a reference to the night then-President Richard Nixon fired the special prosecutor Archibald Cox, who was investigating the Watergate Scandal.

“To call it massacre, I don’t think you can do that,” Manchin said. “To say it was unexpected, absolutely. To say it’s shocking, you betcha.”

He added: “We are looking forward to him coming in very shortly to the Senate Intelligence Committee. We are sure looking forward to that. Maybe with more anticipation than before.”

In an interview with Fox News, Manchin said “the only thing I am hopeful for right now is whoever the President recommends for confirmation, advise and consent from the Senate, it’s someone that we can all gather around, it’s someone that we have confidence in and it can be overwhelmingly bipartisan.”

“I am hoping the 51 vote nuclear option is nowhere even needed because there is somebody so well-respected and well-qualified to take that position,” he said.