Former CIA Director John Brennan, whose security clearance was revoked by Donald Trump earlier this week as punishment for his support for the Russian Federation investigation, told Rachel Maddow on Friday night that Trump is "drunk on power" and "abusing the powers" of the presidency.
Brennan was reacting to a report in The Washington Post on Friday that said the decision to revoke his security clearance had been finalized in order to switch the news cycle's focus from former White House aide Omarosa Manigault Newman's new book.
Brennan, who has been a frequent, very vocal critic of Trump, had his security clearance revoked on Wednesday, with the White House saying he had been "leveraging" his clearance to make "wild outbursts" against the administration.
The former Central Intelligence Agency director took aim at Trump for his public call as a candidate in July 2016 for Russian Federation to help find missing emails of his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton, who was being scrutinized for having used a private email server while secretary of state.
In his first live TV interview since being stripped of his security clearance, Brennan said on MSNBC late Friday that Trump's is " drunk with power", and rapped Republican lawmakers in Congress for turning a blind eye to the president's actions.
In his Friday comments, Trump said he had gotten "tremendous response" for his action against Brennan.
"Many people don't even know who (Brennan) is, and now he has a bigger voice".
According to CNN, Donald Trump is considering revoking the clearances of at least nine former and current national security officials: James Clapper (former Director of National Intelligence), Michael Hayden (former CIA and NSA Director), Sally Yates (former Deputy Attorney General), Susan Rice (former National Security Adviser), James Comey (former FBI Director), Andrew McCabe (former Deputy FBI Director), Peter Strzok (former FBI agent), Lisa Page (former FBI attorney), and Bruce Ohr (DOJ official). "I've never respected him". Several of them have said they no longer have clearances. All of these former officials have decades of valuable expertise and experience, but they've also spoken critically about the Trump Administration, in moves that have made them unpopular - and the subjects of "frenzied commentary" from the president.
That followed a joint letter signed by seven former CIA directors, six former CIA deputy directors, and two former national intelligence directors calling Trump's move against Brennan "ill-considered and unprecedented" and "an attempt to stifle free speech". The others are former director of national intelligence James Clapper Jr.; former CIA and Federal Bureau of Investigation directors Michael Hayden and James Comey; Obama national security adviser Susan Rice; former Federal Bureau of Investigation officials Andrew McCabe, Lisa Page and Peter Strzok; and former acting attorney general Sally Yates. "Beyond that, this action is quite clearly a signal to other former and current officials", the former top officials said in their Thursday statement. "And I think it's very sad what they've done to Paul Manafort", Mr. Trump said.
"There are a lot of times you have to go in there and tell him something he doesn't want to hear".
This article was written by Josh Dawsey and Karen DeYoung, reporters for The Washington Post.