Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., said Tuesday that any judge would disqualify Special Counsel Robert Mueller from serving as a juror in a case arising from the Russia investigation due to a conflict of interest because of his friendship with former FBI Director James Comey.
“I was one of the first ones to actually call for Mr. Mueller to resign, and I stand by it,” Franks, who is a member of the House Judiciary Committee, told Trending Today USA radio talk show host Ernie Brown.
“I don’t know what his motivations are in his heart, but I do know there is a clear conflict of interest in the way that he is proceeding,” the congressman said in reference to Mueller’s friendship with Comey and the members of the legal team he has hired.
Franks released a statement Tuesday calling for Mueller’s resignation.
“Bob Mueller is in clear violation of federal code and must resign to maintain the integrity of the investigation into alleged Russian ties. Those who worked under them have attested he and Jim Comey possess a close friendship, and they have delivered on-the-record statements effusing praise of one another,” Franks said.
“Already, this investigation has become suspect — reports have revealed at least four members of Mueller’s team on the Russia probe donated to support Hillary Clinton for president, as President Trump pointed out. These obviously deliberate partisan hirings do not help convey impartiality,” the Arizona representative added.
Brown asked Franks how Mueller can be impartial as an investigator if he would be disqualified as a juror.
“I’m going to steal that from you, because I believe that is a haymaker point,” Franks replied.
“You’re exactly right,” the congressman continued. “There is no question in my mind that any unbiased judge would say, ‘You, sir, cannot be a juror. You’re connected to one of the primary figures in this whole thing that essentially catalyzed your appointment. So there is no way you can be an unbiased juror.’”
“Then to suggest that somehow someone who can’t be a juror is all of the sudden completely qualified to be ultimate arbiter of what charges are brought and how things go forward, I just think is astonishing,” Franks added.
FreedomWorks named Franks its member of the month for August.
— FreedomWorks (@FreedomWorks) August 1, 2017
“Rep. Franks has supported lowering taxes and voting for policies that contribute to FreedomWorks’ pro-growth agenda,” the conservative group stated in its announcement.
“With his conviction to protect the Constitution and support policies to shrink government by cutting wasteful spending and bureaucratic over-regulation, he has maintained a lifetime score of 92 percent on FreedomWorks’ Congressional Scorecard.”
— Rep. Trent Franks (@RepTrentFranks) August 1, 2017
Franks represents Arizona’s 8th congressional district, which is located on the northwest side of the Phoenix metropolitan area.