Ex-Trump Adviser McMaster Rips 'Illegitimate Political Discourse' of Jan. 6

H.R. McMaster, who served as national security adviser to former President Donald Trump, said Sunday that the events that took place on January 6, 2021 were "illegitimate political discourse."

His comments came during an interview on CBS' Face the Nation and days after the Republican National Committee's censure of Reps. Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger.

The censure resolution approved by the RNC on Friday said that the two legislators are "participating in a Democrat-led persecution of ordinary citizens engaged in legitimate political discourse." The two are the only Republicans who serve on the House select committee investigating the attack.

Several prominent Republicans have criticized the censure.

During the Sunday interview, CBS host Margaret Brennan asked McMaster if he believes January 6 "was in any way legitimate political discourse."

"No, it was illegitimate political discourse because it was an assault on the first branch of government," he responded. "I think it's really important for us to come together now...I really think it is possible to improve the transparency and the security of our elections while ensuring that every eligible voter gets to vote."

McMaster added, "I think what we need to do is stop posturing across these political parties and begin conversations with what we can agree on. It is pretty clear that we are emerging from a number of traumas of the past couple of years."

 McMaster Rips Jan, 6 ‘Illegitimate Political Discourse'
H.R. McMaster, who served as national security adviser to former President Donald Trump, said Sunday that the events that took place on January 6, 2021 were "illegitimate political discourse." Above, McMaster attends a joint news conference in the East Room of the White House April 3, 2018 in Washington, DC. Alex Wong

He said that it's time for Americans to come together and to restore confidence in "who we are as a people and in our democratic principles and institutions and processes."

Brennan also asked McMaster whether he agreed with former Vice President Mike Pence, who said Friday that Trump was "wrong" when he claimed Pence had the authority to overturn the 2020 election results.

"Absolutely and all Americans should agree with Vice President Pence," McMaster responded.

"It's time, Margaret, I think, to demand more from our political leaders, demand that they stop compromising confidence in our democratic principles and institutions and processes to score partisan political points. And as you know, this happens across both political parties and it's just time to stop," he added.

During a speech at a Federalist Society event in Florida on Friday, Pence said that he had "no right to overturn the election."

"The presidency belongs to the American people, and the American people alone. Frankly there is almost no idea more un-American than the notion that any one person could choose the American president," he said.