Former House Speaker and current Trump supporter Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) said Friday that a “president cannot obstruct justice.”
Gingrich said that as president, Trump was well within his authority to fire the head of the FBI.
“The president of the United States is the chief executive officer of the United States. If he wants to fire the FBI director, all he has to do is fire him,” said Gingrich in comments at the National Press Club, where he was promoting a new book.
Twitter pushed back, noting that Gingrich had voted to impeach former President Bill Clinton, including an article that charged him with obstruction of justice.
Obstruction of justice was the third article of impeachment against Bill Clinton in the House. And Newt Gingrich was Speaker of the House. https://t.co/ldDjphH05P
— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) June 16, 2017
As reported by the The Times and other news outlets at the time, when referring to the investigation into President Clinton after his repeated denials of having an affair with Monica Lewinsky, Gingrich described Clinton’s actions as “obstruction of justice.”
“What you have lived through for 2.5 long years is the most systematic, deliberate obstruction-of-justice cover-up and effort to avoid the truth we have ever seen in American history,” he said.
In 1998, Gingrich voted for an impeachment article that charged Bill Clinton with obstruction of justice https://t.co/VtOiutkudb
— Jamie Dupree (@jamiedupree) June 16, 2017
Gingrich’s comments came after Trump tweeted this earlier this morning:
I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 16, 2017