Ryan warns Trump against pardoning himself

Erika Holt
June 10, 2018

Ryan said Wednesday that so far he agrees with the assessment that the Federal Bureau of Investigation behaved appropriately, but he also signaled that he wants to see more information from the Justice Department.

"But I have no evidence to the contrary of the initial assessment that chairman Gowdy has made but I want to run every lead down and make sure we get the final answers to the questions". The official said they would provide new materials and also "the documents that were available for review but not inspected by the members at the previous briefing".

"They are a group of 13 highly partisan Democrats that make up the Mueller team, excluding him, (who) are trying very, very hard to frame him, to get him in trouble, when he hasn't done anything wrong", Giuliani said at a question-and-answer session at the Globes capital markets conference in Tel Aviv. "If we got all the information we were looking for, we could wrap this up faster", Ryan added. But they eventually relented after pressure from Trump, Nunes and Ryan.

In remarks to reporters Thursday, Ryan countered that congressional Republicans were making more progress in obtaining answers from the Department of Justice because of his personal involvement. But in a release, Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr said the committee is cooperating with the department. "If you just look at the Constitution, it says the president can pardon, and there are not words of limitation".

"I think chairman Gowdy's initial assessment is accurate", Ryan said, but then also offered support for House Intelligence Committee chair Devin Nunes' ongoing investigation into the Justice Department.

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The move comes as Republican congressional leaders are publicly disputing President Donald Trump's claims that the government planted a spy in his 2016 campaign "to help Crooked Hillary win" - a reference to his Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton. Frustration that the foot dragging by the Department of Justice should not be tolerated. Moderates are attempting to force a vote on several immigration bills, including one that would protect young undocumented immigrants from deportation in exchange for border security funding.

Speaking on Carlson's primetime show Wednesday night, Swalwell denied that the FBI's alleged informant - veteran spy and academic Stefan Halper - actually spied on the Trump campaign, arguing that "spying is what you do against an enemy".

During a press conference earlier in the day, Ryan told reporters that "no one is above the law" when asked if Trump has the ability to pardon himself.

Ryan's comments angered conservatives like Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida, a vocal critic of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation who suggested Ryan's comments prompted fresh talk of removing Ryan as speaker. "Legally, I don't know". Nevertheless, Ryan made clear that he doesn't believe Trump should pardon himself.

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