'The penalty should be impeachment': Ex-ethics chief nukes Trump's 'outrageous' views on firing investigators
Former head of Office of Government Ethics Walter Shaub (Photo: Screen capture)

Former director of government ethics Walter Shaub on Wednesday leveled a blistering attack on a new tweet from President Donald Trump in which he insists that firing former FBI Director James Comey can't possibly be seen as obstruction of justice given that the president has the power to fire executive branch employees.

During a CNN panel, Shaub was asked about the president quoting Fox News legal analyst Joe diGenova, who claimed that it was "outrageous" for special counsel Robert Mueller to question Trump about his motivations for firing Comey given that Trump has the constitutional right to can his own FBI director.

Shaub was unsparing in his analysis.

"What an outrageous tweet," he said. "The man seems to think he's king, not president. It is true he has the power to fire anybody he wants... but what he's really declaring with that tweet is the idea that a president can go around expressly firing people to prevent himself from being held accountable under the rule of law."

Shaub then pointed to Trump's interview last year with Lester Holt in which he admitted that he was thinking about Comey overseeing the FBI's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election before he fired him.

"If he continues to go down this road and fire people for investigating him, how many will it take for Congress to wake up and make a decision that the rule of law in this country matters and the president isn't above that rule of law?" he asked. "The penalty, if goes around repeatedly firing people who are investigating him, should be impeachment."

Watch the video below.