Sen. John McCain had a quick explanation for why his line of questioning at fired FBI Director James Comey’s hearing on Thursday didn’t make much sense to some people — he was up late watching baseball.
Observers reacted to the awkward back-and-forth between McCain and Comey before the Senate Intelligence Committee with confusion and in some cases concern. McCain asked Comey about what he described as a “double standard” between the FBI’s treatment of investigations into Hillary Clinton and Trump’s campaign, but he appeared flustered at various points, and it was unclear what his point was.
“I get the sense from Twitter that my line of questioning today went over people’s heads,” McCain said in a statement Thursday afternoon. “Maybe going forward I shouldn’t stay up late watching the Diamondbacks night games.”
“What I was trying to get at was whether Mr. Comey believes that any of his interactions with the President rise to the level of obstruction of justice,” he continued. “In the case of Secretary Clinton’s emails, Mr. Comey was willing to step beyond his role as an investigator and state his belief about what ‘no reasonable prosecutor’ would conclude about the evidence. I wanted Mr. Comey to apply the same approach to the key question surrounding his interactions with President Trump—whether or not the President’s conduct constitutes obstruction of justice.”
Comey declined to offer such an assessment during the hearing, saying that it was not his place to make such a judgment.
“While I missed an opportunity in today’s hearing, I still believe this question is important, and I intend to submit it in writing to Mr. Comey for the record,” McCain concluded.