Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., on Monday blasted the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court’s selection of attorney David Kris to oversee the FBI’s compliance with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.
“It’s more like the fox guarding the henhouse,” Nunes told “Fox & Friends," questioning whether Kris will be serious about reforming the process.
A former Obama administration lawyer, Kris will oversee the FBI's implementation of reforms in the wake of a damning Department of Justice inspector general report last year.
In a tweet Sunday, President Trump referenced Nunes' interview with Maria Bartiromo, host of the Fox News show "Sunday Morning Futures," where he called Kris "highly controversial" and slammed the FISC's decision.
Nunes said that the judge "inexcusably" picked Kris, labeling him as the most "nasty" person among the eight candidates.
Kris served as an associate deputy attorney general under George W. Bush from 2000 to 2003. He later criticized Bush's justifications for warrantless wiretap surveillance.
But, as the political winds changed, Kris became more of a proponent for government surveillance in other contexts. He appeared on MSNBC's left-wing "The Rachel Maddow Show" in 2018 to offer a spirited defense of the FBI's FISA practices.
"FISA applications are typically quite long -- they're big enough that you don't want to drop one on your foot," Kris told Maddow. "They contain a lot of information and detail, because the statute is quite exacting in what it requires the government to establish to get the warrant granted."
Commenting on whether unredacting FISA materials posed a challenge to the FBI's investigation, Kris remarked that "a lot of water [was] already under the bridge thanks to the back-and-forth precipitated" by Nunes -- knocking the key House Republican for pushing to release some of the secretive documents.
On Twitter, Kris also insisted the "walls" were "closing in" on Trump -- a common refrain on liberal cable news networks during the Russia probe.
“I think these tools are very important to protect Americans from terrorists and others but not if it’s going to mean that the Democratic Party gets to use these tools to attempt to remove presidents and target political operatives when they want to,” Nunes said.
“I’d rather get rid of and abolish this court than be left with that,” Nunes said.
Fox News’ Gregg Re contributed to this report.