Bush ethics chief: FBI director needs to stand up to Trump or resign
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A top ethics lawyer during President George W. Bush's administration says FBI Director Christopher Wray needs to tell President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump opens new line of impeachment attack for Democrats Bloomberg to spend 0M on anti-Trump ads in battleground states New witness claims first-hand account of Trump's push for Ukraine probes MORE and other Republicans to stop targeting his agency or resign.

“FBI Director Chris Wray [is] allowing himself and the FBI to be humiliated by Trump and by political hacks in Congress,” Richard Painter, a White House ethics lawyer in Bush's second term, tweeted Tuesday.

“Wray needs to do his job and tell all of them to cut it out. If Wray can’t do that he should resign.”

Wray was nominated by Trump to lead the FBI after the president fired its previous director, James ComeyJames Brien ComeyChris Wallace on Yovanovitch testimony: 'If you're not moved, you don't have a pulse' Day one impeachment hearings draw 13.1M viewers, down 32 percent from Comey hearings There are poor ideas, bad ones and Facebook's Libra MORE, earlier this year.


Trump has stepped up his attacks on the FBI in recent weeks, saying the agency’s reputation was “in tatters” and targeting officials like Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.

The president sent multiple tweets over the holiday weekend going after McCabe, while he called the FBI “tainted” in a tweet earlier Tuesday.

Wray sent an email to FBI staffers defending the agency earlier this month after Trump went after the bureau.

The FBI director wrote that he was “inspired by example after example of professionalism and dedication to justice demonstrated around the bureau. It is truly an honor to represent you.”

Some GOP lawmakers have accused the FBI and Justice Department of being biased against Trump, especially after it was revealed that special counsel Robert Mueller removed an FBI agent from his team investigating Russian election meddling after the department discovered anti-Trump text messages that the agent sent during the election.

McCabe appeared before lawmakers for hours behind closed doors last week amid probes into Russia's interference in the 2016 presidential election and the FBI's handling of the investigation into Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonWhat are Democrats going to do once Donald Trump leaves office? Trump to hold campaign rally in Florida later this month Krystal Ball accuses Democrats of having 'zero moral authority' amid impeachment inquiry MORE's use of a private email server while she was secretary of State.

GOP lawmakers have defended their questioning of McCabe, saying it was part of an existing probe into the Justice Department's actions during the 2016 campaign.

However, Democrats have criticized the move as an attempt to undermine Mueller’s investigation into Moscow's election meddling and ties between Trump campaign associates and Russia.