Former FBI Director James Comey held another one of his sanctimonious press conferences on Monday, telling anyone who would listen that President Donald Trump was “lying about the FBI, attacking the FBI, and attacking the rule of law in this country.” It was evidently beneath Comey’s ability to notice or care that while the FBI’s reputation – and, with it, the integrity of the rule of law – has indeed slipped over the last couple of years, it isn’t Trump’s fault; it is, in part, James Comey’s. And his refusal to be up front and honest with lawmakers only adds to the problem.
One can easily surmise that the FBI’s reputation has been on shaky ground from the moment Comey stood up in front of television cameras in the summer of 2016 and let Hillary Clinton off the hook for a litany of crimes…that he then proceeded to enumerate for the entire country! Not only did Comey irresponsibly assume the position of Attorney General of the Justice Department for an afternoon, he went into great detail on why Clinton should be prosecuted. And then concluded that she wouldn’t be. How in the world is it Trump’s fault, then, that the FBI’s reputation took a hit?
This isn’t just the opinion of Trump supporters, either. Comey made waves with the other side when he re-opened the case on the eve of the election. This, too, was a strange and oddly publicity-seeking move on the part of the FBI director. Comey claims now that he felt he had no choice but to “correct the record,” but dozens and dozens of prominent liberals were calling for his head. Even today, Hillary Clinton includes Comey in her blame list for why she lost the race. To be fair, though, that’s a lost list.
If Comey had spent the last two years owning up to his mistakes, it would be one thing. Nobody’s perfect, and we can even understand getting some things wrong when the eyes of the entire world are upon you. But Comey has done nothing of the kind. Instead, he’s written a book about how he’s one of the last guardians of freedom, and he’s stymied Republicans on Capitol Hill who are trying to determine how the Clinton/Russia investigations went so far off the rails. Comey’s self-serving book is perhaps not even worth talking about, but his testimony on Capitol Hill is nothing short of shameful.
“I don’t know.”
“I don’t remember.”
“I can’t answer that, because of reasons.”
There, that’s basically the whole transcript. Any time that lawmakers got anywhere close to a question that might have put Comey or either of these two investigations in a negative light, the former director suddenly got a case of convenient amnesia. That’s not standing up for justice. That’s covering your ass.