01:03 - Source: CNN
Navarro: Republicans should call Trump out

Story highlights

President Trump suggested that he had taped conversations with fired FBI Director James Comey -- a statement many interpreted as a threat

Ana Navarro criticized Paul Ryan's silence on the matter

CNN —  

Republican strategist and CNN commentator Ana Navarro slammed GOP leaders for acting like members “of the Donald Trump cult,” saying they must “step up and condemn” President Trump when circumstances demand it.

Navarro criticized House Speaker Paul Ryan for refusing to comment this week on the President’s tweet suggesting he had tapes of conversations with fired FBI Director James Comey – a statement many interpreted as a threat.

When asked about the tweet on Friday, Ryan told reporters that he was “focusing on what’s in my control, and that is what is Congress doing to solve people’s problems.”

“I’m going leave it to the President to talk about and defend his tweets,” Ryan said, emphasizing that he is working on other issues that matter to his constituents, such as health care and tax reform.

“I hate picking a bone with Paul Ryan, he’s a friend of mine, but I think he needs to walk and chew gum at the same time,” Navarro said.

“I think you can applaud President Trump’s efforts on health care if that’s where you lie. I think you can applaud his his naming of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, but I think when he does something like make a veiled threat against the former FBI Director… I think people expect for leaders to step up and condemn that,” she added.

“That you are a Republican leader does not mean you are a cult member of the Donald Trump cult. It means that you call them as you see receive them,” she insisted.

Navarro added that, as far as she was concerned, Republicans should follow a simple set of rules when it comes to President Trump.

“When he does things that should be applauded, you do, when he does things that should be condemned, you do. You have a spine, you have a conscience and you have loyalty to the country and the constitution of the United States,” she said.

“You speak up and you wake up and you act up,” Navarro added.

CNN’s Saba Hamedy contributed to this report.