As the Democrats continue to make a federal case out of Donald Trump’s firing Tuesday of FBI Director James Comey, Republicans have begun looking to the future and possible replacements for the now-vacant post. This morning, Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) tweeted out a suggestion that has many scratching their heads.
Lee wrote, “Instead of a special prosecutor, @realDonaldTrump should nominate Merrick Garland to replace James Comey.”
You read that right. Lee is recommending that the president appoint Barack Obama’s embattled nominee for the Supreme Court.
Lee appeared on Fox News this morning to explain why he thinks Garland would be the right man for the job. In a video clip of the interview that follows, Lee notes that Garland has “a long history of prosecutorial experience. He was one of the leader prosecutors who was behind the Timothy McVeigh prosecution in Oklahoma City. And I think this was be an exciting pick.”
Exciting goes without saying. The move would elevate the blood pressure of Democrats in Congress, who are still bitter over Republican lawmakers’ refusal to conduct confirmation hearings on Garland to fill the void left on the Supreme Court by the death of Antonin Scalia. Lee, it is worth noting, was among the senators who favored withholding consideration of Garland for the high court.
Although some Republicans might wonder why Lee is re-opening this can of worms by bringing Garland’s name back into the headlines, there may be some method to his madness. If Garland were nominated and confirmed as FBI director, he would leave his post at the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, creatingan opening on the heavily liberal-leaning bench that that Trump could then fill.