Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL), a candidate for Florida Governor, said Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein "botched" the Mueller probe and needs to reel in the special counsel because he has let the investigation "go far beyond its original mandate" in an interview with FOX News' Neil Cavuto on Friday.
"I don't think there was a basis to appoint Mueller, but he certainly has not reined him in. He has let this thing go far beyond the original mandate," he said of Rosenstein.
DeSantis slammed Rosenstein and said he has a "peculiar view" of the constitution and the rule of law is an "arbitrary decision" made by him.
"I just think Rod Rosenstein has a peculiar view of the Constitution and rule of law," DeSantis said. "He seems to think we have the Congress, we have the president, the courts, and then the Justice Department is superior to all of them, and that the rule of law is basically whatever some arbitrary decision is made by him or Mueller or other people in the department."
The GOP Congressman questioned what Mueller wants with President Trump if he is not the target of his investigation, especially if he has not identified a crime.
"What's the underlying crime in dealing with the campaign? They haven't produced anything involving anyone associated with the campaign. So you're going to subpoena the president to try to answer questions when you have not identified a crime?" DeSantis asked.
He said Mueller should "put up or shut up" and if he doesn't have any collusion evidence he should move on.
"My gut is saying is that this thing has gone off the rails," DeSantis said. "I think Rod needs to reel it in. I think Mueller should put up or shut up. If he doesn't have collusion evidence, then let's move on."
DeSantis reminded viewers that Mueller is an "inferior officer" in the executive branch and thus answers to the head of the executive branch, the president of the United States.
Transcript, via FOX News:
NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: Anyway, the DOJ inspector general is looking into possible FBI misconduct and was supposed to testify next week on Capitol Hill.
Now, that hearing is delayed to make sure the investigation is complete and unimpeded, all this as the deputy attorney general, Rod Rosenstein, you might remember, continues to come under fire for his handling of the whole Mueller probe and how he reacted to all of that.
Critics claim he's botching it. He says the critics are piling on and they better be careful.
Florida Republican Congressman Ron DeSantis is a member of the House Judiciary Committee.
Congressman, I wonder if Rod Rosenstein was talking about you or guys like you when he talked about this pressure. What was it?
REP. RON DESANTIS, R-FLORIDA: I just think Rod Rosenstein has a peculiar view of the Constitution and rule of law.
He seems to think we have the Congress, we have the president, the courts, and then the Justice Department is superior to all of them, and that the rule of law is basically whatever some arbitrary decision is made by him or Mueller or other people in the department.
That is not the way this operates. They are a statutorily created department. They get their funding from Congress. And we, the American people and their elected representatives, have a right to conduct oversight over their activity.
So, he has stonewalled our investigations for months and months. And, yes, I do think he has botched this whole Mueller thing. I don't think there was a basis to appoint Mueller, but he certainly has not reined him in. He has let this thing go far beyond the original mandate.
Full transcript here.