Republican Senator Chuck Grassley says he sees no reason to delay next week’s Senate confirmation hearing for the northwest Iowan President Donald Trump has appointed to be the U.S.D.A.’s top science advisor.
Sam Clovis worked on Trump’s presidential campaign for 15 months and The Washington Post reports Clovis was the “campaign supervisor” who urged a Trump campaign volunteer to meet with Russian officials. Grassley was asked this morning if Clovis should withdraw as a nominee or delay the confirmation hearing.
Grassley says, “Oh, gosh, I think it’s awful early for me to make a judgment about that from the standpoint that everything I’ve thought about Sam Clovis is his qualification for the job that the president appointed him to.” Grassley says Clovis should cooperate with the FBI as it looks into the case: “It’d be stupid for him not to (cooperate).” Clovis, who ran for state treasurer in 2014 as a Republican, is now the White House liaison to the U.S.D.A. Grassley says the confirmation process should move forward.
“I’ve got great confidence in the special counsel approach and I’ll just let that work its way out,” Grassley says, “maybe not only on Sam Clovis, but on almost everything you might ask me about this.” Grassley told reporters in Washington, D.C. yesterday that President Trump “should let the special counsel do his job.” Grassley indicates there’s no reason to cancel or delay Clovis’ hearing date but he’ll be following developments closely.
“I think that one thing that would make a big difference to me is the extent to which Sam Clovis is committed to cooperating with the special counsel,” Grassley says. Grassley issued a written statement on the special counsel’s investigation on Monday. Grassley said he and the other members of the Senate Judiciary Committee will work “to ensure that the Justice Department and FBI are functioning free from inappropriate influence.”