GOP senator: Trump needs to 'back off' Russian investigation, stop tweeting

GOP senator: Trump needs to 'back off' Russian investigation, stop tweeting
© Greg Nash

A senior GOP Senator said Sunday he would recommend President Trump stop tweeting about the ongoing investigation into the Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

"Right now, I do not believe President Trump is a target or a subject of any investigation regarding collusion with the Russians. That's what I believe," Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamTop Louisiana health official rips Cassidy over ObamaCare repeal bill Senate Dems hold floor talk-a-thon against latest ObamaCare repeal bill Overnight Defense: Senate passes 0B defense bill | 3,000 US troops heading to Afghanistan | Two more Navy officials fired over ship collisions MORE (R-S.C.) said during an interview on NBC's "Meet The Press."

"I would advise the president not to tweet or comment about the investigation as we go forward," he warned.

Graham said the Russians did interfere in the 2016 presidential election.

He said he doesn't believe the Russians changed the outcome of the election and he has no evidence of collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign.

"But the president needs to back off here and let the investigation go forward," he said.

The comments come after Trump last week fired former FBI Director James Comey, sparking controversy and confusion in Washington.

In tweets following the event, Trump said Comey better hope there are no "tapes" of their conversations before he starts leaking to the press.

During the interview, Graham said if there are tapes, they need to be turned over.

"You can't be cute about tapes," he said, echoing comments made by Democrat members of the Senate.

He also said he thinks it's time for an FBI agent to lead the FBI.

"How about the idea of an FBI agent leading the FBI, promoting within the ranks," he said.

"There are so many good agents...this is up to the president. He has a duty and obligation to pick somebody beyond reproach, outside the political lane. I think he'll do that. I hope he'll do that," he said.

Interviews for the permanent head of the FBI are underway by the Department of Justice. Trump has said he just wants someone "competent" in charge. 

"Almost all of them are very well known," Trump said of the candidates on Saturday. "They've been vetted over their lifetime, essentially. But very well known, highly respected, really talented people. And that's what we want for the FBI."