Sen. Ben Sasse: Comey memo 'troubling' if true

Sasse talks to "Powerhouse Politics" about Trump, Russia and his book.

ByAvery Miller
May 18, 2017, 12:07 PM

— -- Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Nebraska, has said that he finds Tuesday's report that President Donald Trump asked former FBI Director James Comey to end the investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn "troubling."

In a wide-ranging interview on ABC News' "Powerhouse Politics" podcast, Sasse, who ended up on many American voters’ radar during the election when he expressed his disgust for then-candidate Trump on his Facebook page, shared his thoughts on the turmoil plaguing the White House.

Sasse, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, has called for a full disclosure of Comey’s memos and any related tapes that the White House could conceivably have.

“It is really troubling if you have a situation where it seems like there’s political interference in decision-making about investigation and prosecution,” said Sasse.

The White House has denied the report. “While the president has repeatedly expressed his view that General Flynn is a decent man who served and protected our country, the president has never asked Mr. Comey or anyone else to end any investigation, including any investigation involving General Flynn. The president has the utmost respect for our law enforcement agencies, and all investigations. This is not a truthful or accurate portrayal of the conversation between the president and Mr. Comey."

Sasse, 45, went on to say, “The FBI must be an agency that the American people can trust and can know it is insulated from politics. The FBI director has a 10-year tenure for a reason. The public needs to understand why this should not be a blue or red jersey-wearing partisan in that job.”

Sasse also believes Russia is enemy No. 1.

“[Russian President Vladimir] Putin is a thug and he presides over a 'thugocracy,'" Sasse said. "And he is an enemy of free speech, press, religion and assembly, which are the beating heart of the First Amendment and the American experiment. We need to understand that Russia -- they are not the good guys.”

But he doesn’t only fear for the U.S., he worries about those “digital natives” -- children who are addicted to their electronic devices.

“It is possible for them to think that going to the top of the mountain on Instagram and seeing a friend that does it too, might be a substitute for climbing that mountain himself,” he added.

Sasse is the author of a new book published this week, "The Vanishing American Adult: Our Coming-of-Age Crisis -- and How to Rebuild a Culture of Self-Reliance."

In the book, the senator shares lots of ideas about how to bring up strong, principled children, including making sure they get dirt under their fingernails. In fact, he sent his 14-year-old daughter to work on a cattle ranch.

So what’s on his bedside table right now to read? "Classified information," he said, with a chuckle.

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