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Republicans have come out swinging after FBI Director James Comey recommended that the Justice Department not file charges against Hillary Clinton for her alleged mishandling of classified documents.
Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Reince Priebus appeared on CNN's “The Situation Room” Tuesday to discuss the controversy.
During the segment, Priebus told host Wolf Blitzer that Tuesday's press conference confirmed what many already knew. Clinton was “clearly lying” about multiple aspects of her email conduct.
After a back-and-forth regarding “criminal intent,” Priebus finally dropped the mic by issuing a direct challenge to Clinton and FBI Director James Comey:
“What about the transcript? Perhaps Comey or Hillary Clinton should release the transcript of her interview that she had with the FBI over the weekend. If she's so innocent, it would be great to see what that transcript has to say.”
Priebus's call for a release of the FBI transcript echoes a statement made by Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) Tuesday [emphasis added]:
"While I have tremendous respect for the dedicated men and women of the FBI, I have serious concerns about the integrity of Director Comey’s decision, and how it threatens the rule of law.
Director Comey has rewritten a clearly worded federal criminal statute. In so doing, he has come dangerously close to saying that grossly negligent handling of classified information should not result in serious consequences for high-level officials...
I join my Senate Judiciary colleagues, including Chairman Grassley, in calling for public transparency of, and full access to, all the information that the FBI used to come to today’s dubious decision."
Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) also made a similar remark to Fox News's Megyn Kelly:
“The FBI should release all their findings. She’s competing for Commander in Chief here. There’s a whole accounting that needs to happen. We’re going to have hearings.”
The sentiment expressed by Cruz, Ryan, and Priebus seems to be growing among prominent Republicans. As Independent Journal Review previously reported, “the House Committee on Intelligence will discuss the possibility of congressional hearings” regarding Clinton's practices.
FBI officials declined to comment on the potential release of evidence and transcripts to the public.