President Trump’s list of potential candidates to replace fired FBI Director James Comey includes current and former lawmakers as well as law enforcement figures, Fox News reported Friday. The ever-popular Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) is on the list, as is former Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI) and Senator John Cornyn (R-TX).
A White House official told Fox News that the Trump administration is looking at nearly a dozen candidates in all and “they are moving quickly” to find a replacement.
“We are moving quickly and expeditiously to pick an interim and a permanent replacement, and we’re doing our due diligence—we’re not going to cut any corners,” the source said.
The roster of contenders is extensive, including some names already reported such as former Rep. Mike Rogers and former New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly as well as lesser-known law enforcement officials.
Kelly has long been known to Trump from his days serving as NYPD commissioner. Kelly spent nearly five decades in the NYPD serving in different commands. After his handling of the World Trade Center bombing in 1993, Kelly was mentioned as a possible candidate for FBI Director. Kelly also was Director of Police under the United Nations mission in Haiti, also serving in the Clinton administration as Treasury Department Undersecretary for Enforcement. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., endorsed Kelly as a candidate for secretary of Homeland Security during President Obama’s first term, and later to head the FBI in 2011 when Robert Mueller stepped down from the post.
The list also includes several lawmakers on key law enforcement oversight panels. Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., led the congressional probe into Benghazi; Rogers is an ex-Michigan congressman who led the House Intelligence Committee and served as an FBI agent; and Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn, of Texas, sits on the Senate Intelligence Committee.
Others being considered to fill Comey’s job are seasoned DOJ professionals. Thompson was deputy attorney general for President George W. Bush, and Fisher was deputy assistant attorney general for the Criminal Division, and was only the second woman ever to hold the position. John Suthers, now mayor of Colorado Springs, was a federal prosecutor, as was Mike Garcia. Garcia was appointed by Bush as a U.S. attorney and now serves as an associate judge on the New York Court of Appeals.
Those on the list with FBI-specific experience include Rogers and Paul Abbate, now assistant director in charge of the FBI. Current Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe served as Comey’s No. 2, and is now being considered for permanent director.
Luttig, the executive vice president of Boeing, would cover Trump’s penchant for plucking from the private sector to fill key administration roles. Luttig is also a former federal appellate court judge.
Trump would be well advised to avoid nominating a deep stater to fill this crucial role. There are a couple of “swamp things” on this list who I suspect would not lend themselves well to the task of draining the swamp. The new FBI director should be one who is willing to take a second look at EmailGate, the Clinton Foundation, and other Obama-era scandals like the IRS scandal — all of which got short shrift under the direction of Comey.
Donald Trump shouldn’t be the one on the defensive after eight years of Obama’s gangster government.
Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Texas) made his preference for who the next FBI director should be earlier this week.
“Trey Gowdy has more fairness and integrity and is more motivated by it than any person that I’ve met in Washington,” Ratcliff told Fox Business’ Maria Bartiromo. “And when it comes to fierce independence, I think he may be the only Republican in Washington who has never met or spoken with Donald Trump. So I think he’s exactly the kind of person who would inspire confidence both inside and outside the FBI — and that’s exactly what we need as a nation right now.”