Texas senator John Cornyn among 8 candidates for FBI Director

As Senate majority whip, Cornyn holds the second highest ranking position in the U.S. Senate.

Mackowiak said that whomever Trump nominates will likely be confirmed "in the 51- to 54-vote range" because of the fallout after Comey's dismissal, and that the president can not nominate a loyalist like former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani to the post.

While Cornyn did serve as both a Texas Supreme Court justice and state attorney general before being elected to the Senate, he would seem among the least likely picks on the list.

Luttig, the general counsel for Boeing Corp., is viewed as a conservative legal powerhouse from his tenure as a judge on the 4th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals and his time as a Justice Department lawyer.

"The Trump White House doesn't want to make a mistake here", he says.

The role requires Senate confirmation.

In an interview with USA media, President Trump also accused him being a "showboat" and a "grandstander". Trump cited Comey's handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton's emails as the reason for his dismissal, but others are anxious that the firing may have had something to do with the agency's investigation into possible collusion between Russian Federation and Trump's campaign, during the election.

Trump said, however, that he would have removed Comey no matter the advice from Rosenstein or Sessions. But GOP senators set term limits for leadership posts and his ends at the start of 2019. In recent days, the senator has maintained that his focus remains on his Senate seat, but his voting records and public statements of support have made him a close ally to Pres. Trump. The former Republican senator from Alabama sharply criticized Cornyn's bipartisan effort previous year to overhaul the nation's criminal justice system and revise some 1980s and '90s-era federal "tough on crime" laws.

Students at Texas Southern University in Houston had circulated a petition demanding the Texas senator be withdrawn as a commencement speaker, citing various stances he has taken. Schumer also said the new appointee "should be not a partisan politician, not part of either party".

One person familiar with Cornyn's thinking told The Washington Post that his meeting with Sessions on Saturday was not billed as an interview and instead about the "next steps" for the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Concerns about an ugly student confrontation prompted Texas Southern University to cancel a scheduled commencement address Saturday by U.S. Sen.

In a statement Friday the university said that Cornyn has been asked to "instead visit with our students again at a future date in order to keep the focus on graduates and their families".

Libby Hambleton, a spokeswoman for Cornyn, said in an email that the senator was honored to have been invited to speak, but that he "respects the administration's decision and looks forward to continuing to engage with the university in the future".

Mike Rogers: Rogers is a former chairman of the powerful House Intelligence Committee, who represented MI and once served as an agent in the bureau. She declined to comment. "Does he appoint a young, Latino Republican like George P. Bush?"

Trump is also reported to be considering other law enforcement professionals including former New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly who served under Mayor Rudy Giuliani during the 9/11 attack.

  • Annette Adams