From the May 14 edition of CNN's State of the Union:
JAKE TAPPER (HOST): Let's take a wider view of this for one second and then I want to get back to some of these more detailed questions. This week, with the president firing the FBI director while this investigation is going on, and then saying that he was thinking about the Russia probe when he was making the decision, have we crossed a line here?
JAMES CLAPPER (FORMER DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE): Well, I will just say that the developments of the past week are very bothersome, very disturbing to me. I think in many ways, our institutions are under assault, both externally, and that's the big news here, is the Russian interference in our election system. And I think, as well, our institutions are under assault internally.
TAPPER: Internally from the president?
TAPPER: Because he's firing the checks and balances?
CLAPPER: Well I think, the Founding Fathers in their genius created a system of three co-equal branches of government, and a built-in system of checks and balances. And I feel as though that's under assault and is eroding.