Advertisement

John McCain blames his bizarre questions during Comey testimony on tiredness

Click to play video 'McCain questions Comey on decision to close Clinton investigation' McCain questions Comey on decision to close Clinton investigation
WATCH: McCain questions Comey on decision to close Clinton investigation

WASHINGTON – Sen. John McCain suggested that he was tired when he questioned fired FBI director James Comey on Thursday, a performance that lit up Twitter and the Internet with unsparing criticism.

The 80-year-old Arizona Republican joked that maybe he shouldn’t have stayed up late watching the Arizona Diamondbacks playing a night game out West.

READ MORE: Competing realities: What James Comey said vs. what Donald Trump has said

“What I was trying to get at was whether Mr. Comey believes that any of his interactions with the president rise to the level of obstruction of justice,” McCain said in a statement after his questioning.

Instead, McCain flummoxed Comey with a question about why “the investigation of anything former Secretary Clinton had to do with the campaign is over and we don’t have to worry about it anymore?”

Story continues below advertisement

Comey pointed out they were separate investigations, begun at different times.

WATCH: How is James Comey’s testimony playing in the U.S. media?

Click to play video 'How is James Comey’s testimony playing in the U.S. media?' How is James Comey’s testimony playing in the U.S. media?
How is James Comey’s testimony playing in the U.S. media?

“I’m a little confused,” Comey responded. “With respect to Secretary Clinton, we investigated a criminal investigation in connection with her use of a personal email server.”

McCain said he doesn’t understand how Comey could be done with the Clinton probe having concluded no charges were warranted, but wouldn’t say the same about the Russian investigation. Comey said the Russian investigation is ongoing as far as he knows.

WATCH: Comey explains why he recorded Trump meetings, but not other Presidents

Click to play video 'Comey explains why he recorded Trump meetings, but not other Presidents' Comey explains why he recorded Trump meetings, but not other Presidents
Comey explains why he recorded Trump meetings, but not other Presidents

McCain, who can alternate between gruff and self-deprecating, afterward made light of the mess.

Story continues below advertisement

“I get the sense from Twitter that my line of questioning today went over people’s heads,” McCain said in a statement. Turning more serious, McCain said, “while I missed an opportunity in today’s hearing, I still believe this question is important, and I intend to submit it in writing to Mr. Comey for the record.”

The Diamondbacks joined in, retweeting McCain’s statement with the “shrug” emoticon.