FBI director James Comey has been fired by President Trump following the recommendations of Attorney General and Deputy Attorney General.
President Trump on Tuesday fired FBI Director James Comey, abruptly ending a rocky year-long stretch for the top law enforcement officer who came under fire for his handling of the Clinton email probe — and whose agency has been investigating whether Trump’s campaign had ties to Russia. “The FBI is one of our nation’s most cherished and respected institutions, and today will mark a new beginning for our crown jewel of law enforcement,” Trump said.
The president told Comey in a brief letter that he could not “effectively lead” the bureau and called for “new leadership that restores public trust and confidence” in law enforcement. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said the president’s decision was based on “the clear recommendations” of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. A search for a new permanent FBI director will begin immediately.
The text of President Trump’s Letter firing Comey
I have received the attached letters from the Attorney General and Deputy Attorney General of the United States recommending your dismissal as the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. I have accepted their recommendation and you are hereby terminated and removed from office, effective immediately.
While I greatly appreciate you informing me, on three separate occasions, that I am not under investigation, I nevertheless concur the judgment of the Department of Justice that you are not able to effectively lead the Bureau.
It is essential that we find new leadership that restores public trust and confidence in its vital law enforcement mission.
I wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors.
DOJ is citing Comey’s handling of Clinton e-mail scandal as a primary justification for the firing of the FBI director not quite to the middle of his ten-year term.
The first count against Comey, according to Rosenstein, was his July 5, 2016 announcement during which he alleged Clinton and her colleagues were “extremely careless” in handling classified material on her personal email and server but also said the FBI would not recommend charges.
The second count against Comey concerned his Oct. 28, 2016 notification to Congress that the bureau was taking another look at the Clinton case in light of newly discovered emails. While Comey has said he did not want to conceal information, Rosenstein said simply refraining from publicizing “non-public information” would not have been concealment.
Former FBI spokesperson John Iannarelli told Fox News he thinks Comey got “bad counsel from those close to him,” and that in the end, Comey was perceived as “too political.”
Both sides of the aisle are reacting as expected in partisan praise or ridicule after FBI Director Comey fired today.
Reaction to President Trump’s decision to fire FBI Director James Comey was split along partisan lines Tuesday, with Republicans claiming that Comey’s dismissal would mark a fresh start for the bureau.
While … Democrats attributed sinister motives to Comey’s firing, with two Senators, Bob Casey of Pennsylvania and Patrick Leahy of Vermont, describing it in press statements as “Nixonian.” Another Democratic senator, Ed Markey of Massachusetts, said the firing “is disturbingly reminiscent of the Saturday Night Massacre during the Watergate scandal and the national turmoil that it caused,” later adding “We are careening ever closer to a Constitutional crisis.”
We can expect more about this firing from both sides of the aisle and legal minds with an axe to grind. This breaking news is, of course, adding fuel to the divide in our nation. More to come.