The James Comey Show.

The F.B.I. has rules against interfering in politics and rules against being interfered with by politicians.  Recent events have shown how difficult it has become to maintain that rule when some politicians have wandered far from normal behavior.  Back in Fall 2016, President Barack Obama’s Attorney General, Loretta Lynch, had to investigate the handling of e-mail messages by former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton.[1]  Then AG Lynch got into the glue for having had a private meeting with former President Bill Clinton.  She announced that F.B.I. director James Comey would have a free hand to run the Clinton investigation.  In July 2016, at the end of the investigation, Comey held a press conference to announce that Clinton would not be prosecuted, although he condemned her careless handling of sensitive e-mails.  Democrats roundly abused Comey for making his less-than-positive remarks while an election loomed.  Then, in October 2016, Comey announced that the investigation had been re-opened when a bunch of Clinton e-mails were discovered on the lap-top that Clinton aide Huma Abedin shared with her husband.[2]

Shortly before the election, Rudy Giuliani, a Trump supporter, announced that a “pretty big surprise” was coming.  Later Giuliani said that his sources were former, not currently serving, FBI agents.[3]  Several days later, Comey announced that the newly-discovered e-mails were just duplicates of previously examined e-mails.  Again, Democrats roundly condemned Comey for meddling in an election.  Bitter partisan strife followed.

In late January 2017, at the request of Democrats in Congress, the Inspector General of the Department of Justice opened an investigation of how Comey had managed the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s sloppy handling of her e-mail while Secretary of State.[4]  The scope of the investigation included both Comey’s original press conference and his decision to announce the re-opening of the investigation less than two weeks before Election Day.

Early in March 2017, reports circulated of an F.B.I. investigation into allegations of contacts between members of the Trump entourage and various Russians.  White House chief-of-staff Reince Priebus asked Comey to tell the press that no such investigation existed.  The White House also solicited Rep. Devin Nunes, chairman of the House committee investigating the Russian involvement in the election, to tell reporters that the story was bunk.  Comey refused because a) there was an investigation going on and b) politicians—like Priebus—weren’t supposed to interfere.  Apparently, intelligence sources leaked word of the spat to the press.[5]

Three weeks after having refused to deny that there was an investigation, Comey said that “in unusual circumstances, it may be appropriate” for the F.B.I. to comment on an on-going investigation.  Then he confirmed, during public testimony before the House Intelligence Committee, that the F.B.I. is investigating contacts between the Russians and the Trump entourage.[6]  Democrats condemned Comey for having thrown Clinton “under the bus” in Fall 2016.

James Comey has been—repeatedly—thrown into an uncomfortable position by the actions of other people.  So far, none of the complaining gets us closer to the truth(es).

[1] See: “The Hacked Election.”  https://waroftheworldblog.com/2016/12/13/the-hacked-election/?iframe=true&theme_preview=true

[2] Habitually described as the “disgraced… Anthony Weiner.”

[3] So, do current FBI agents meet up with still serving colleagues at various Washington, DC watering-holes to talk about old times and…?

[4] “FBI’s Comey investigated over election conduct,” The Week, 27 January 2017, p. 5.

[5] “Russia investigation: A special prosecutor?” The Week, 10 March 2017, p. 16.

[6] “Comey reveals Trump-Russia probe,” The Week, 31 March 2017, p. 5.

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One thought on “The James Comey Show.

  1. Pingback: The Comey Effect. | waroftheworldblog

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