(CNSNews.com) -- House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer said on Tuesday that President Donald Trump "seeks to establish a more authoritarian regime."
Hoyer was responding to a question about whether former CIA Director John Brennan should be allowed to keep his security clearance after calling a sitting president's actions "treasonous."
At his regular pen-and-pad briefing with reporters, CNSNews.com asked Hoyer: “Former CIA Director John Brennan has publicly declared the sitting president ‘treasonous.’ Should he be permitted to keep his security clearance?”
Hoyer responded: “I’m very, very concerned. This is one instance--but there are so many others--where this president opts to promote totalitarian responses and processes, and seeks to establish a more authoritarian regime under his presidency. This is one of those instances.”
“If Obama had done this with respect to Republicans, the Republicans would have been on the ceiling as they were with the IRS, looking at whether or not certain groups were getting a tax benefit to which they were not entitled,” he said.
Hoyer continued: “This is clearly much more egregious. Now the president is not active, [but] he’s raised this. Again, it’s a distraction. The president wants to distract from discussion about how poorly he performed with respect to Mr. Putin, where he clearly was perceived as siding with Putin against the intelligence community, siding with Putin against his own country, siding with Putin against all of the evidence that has been disclosed and, and discovered with respect to Putin’s and Russia’s trying to undermine the integrity of our election process.”
“So I think this was a distraction, and I also thinks it’s undemocratic, and I would hope that the congress of the United States, if they took any action, would act to counter that,” Hoyer concluded.
Hoyer’s comments come after Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) met with President Trump on Monday and asked him to revoke John Brennan’s security clearance. "I don't think that ex-CIA agents of any stripe who are now talking heads should continue to get classified information. I think it's wrong,” he told Fox News.