Senator Rand Paul has joined the chorus of concerned Americans expressing consternation over president-elect Donald Trump’s meeting with retired Gen. David Petraeus with a view to hiring the former CIA head as secretary of State.
In an appearance on CNN, Paul said that it would be highly hypocritical of Trump to appoint someone to his administration who mishandled classified information after advocating criminally charging Hillary Clinton for the same reason.
“I think the problem they’re going to have putting forward is there’s a lot of similarities to Hillary Clinton as far as revealing classified information,” Paul told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer.
“They spent a year and a half beating up Hillary Clinton over revealing classified information and then they would appoint somebody who the FBI says not only revealed it, but then lied about it in an interview and purposefully gave it to someone who did not have the clearance to have that.” Paul added.
Petraeus admitted last year to the unauthorized removal of classified material and paid a $100,000 fine in a bargain deal with the Justice Department after it was revealed that the then CIA director had provided classified information to his biographer, with whom he was having an extramarital affair.
After Trump met with Petraeus Monday, and tweeted that he was “impressed”, one of Paul’s top aides Doug Stafford retweeted Trump adding: “Hillary does it — “lock her up.” Gen Petraeus does it — CABINET POST! No.”
Just met with General Petraeus–was very impressed!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 28, 2016
Hillary does it — "lock her up." Gen Petraeus does it — CABINET POST! No. https://t.co/GpsbH1JO3F
— Doug Stafford (@dougstafford) November 28, 2016
During the CNN interview, Senator Paul, a member of the Foreign Relations Committee, also reiterated that he sees other potential Secretary of State picks, John Bolton and Rudy Giuliani, as unsuitable.
“What I want is somebody who understands that the Iraq War was a mistake, the nation-building has been a mistake, and that regime change has been a mistake,” Paul said. “These are things that Donald Trump has expressed and I believe and agree with completely, which is why I supported him.”
“But I don’t believe Bolton, I don’t believe Giuliani have understood that or come to understand the historical significance of that. I’m unsure where Romney is on this … Because if we don’t understand those lessons, we’re still facing the same kind of questions,” Paul added.
Paul also confirmed that he has not been contacted by the Trump team about a potential administration role, noting “I’m pretty happy with my current job.”
Paul is not alone in his concern over the potential Petraeus pick. Many Trump supporters have noted that the former General is an elite insider, attendee of secret Bilderberg meetings, and an enemy of the US Constitution.