Fired FBI Director James Comey said he believed Obama Administration Attorney General Loretta Lynch lacked credibility when it come to the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s emails – and so he took it upon himself to announce that he was closing the investigation ahead of the 2016 presidential election.
Comey, in an exclusive interview with ABC News Chief Anchor George Stephanopoulos, painted himself as trying to remain above the political fray and guided only by the best interests of the American people and the Federal Bureau of Investigation as he explained his controversial decisions that have earned him bitter scorn from both Clinton and President Donald Trump.
“I actually thought, as bad as this’ll be for me personally, this is my obligation, to protect the F.B.I. and the Justice Department. Given all that had gone on, the attorney general of the United States could not credibly announce this result,” he said. “And if she did, it would do corrosive damage to the institutions of justice.”
Comey’s highly anticipated book, A Higher Loyalty, does not come out until Tuesday – but it has already risen to No. 4 on the list of best-sellers for 2018.
His interview on ABC News Sunday night comes amid repeated verbal attacks by President Donald Trump; in eight tweets over the past week, the president called him a “leaker and liar,” a “slime ball” and “the worst FBI director in history.”
“Slippery James Comey, a man who always ends up badly and out of whack (he is not smart!), will go down as the WORST FBI Director in history, by far!” Trump tweeted Sunday morning.
The White House and the Republican National Committee have also pushed back hard on Comey’s claims.
Trump fired Comey on May 9, 2017, citing a memo from Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein that criticized Comey’s handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server. However, in an interview with NBC News two days later, the President said “this Russia thing with Trump” was on his mind when he fired the FBI director.
Reopening the Clinton investigation days before the election
Comey said he assumed that Clinton would win the 2016 presidential election and that factored into his decision to reopen the FBI investigation into Clinton’s emails just 11 days before the polls.
“I don’t remember spelling it out, but it had to have been, that she’s going to be elected president and if I hide this from the American people, she’ll be illegitimate the moment she’s elected, the moment this comes out,” he said.
Comey announced on Oct. 28 that the FBI had reopened its investigation after finding emails forwarded from her account on her close aide Huma Abedin’s laptop, which was seized as part of an investigation into whether her husband Anthony Weiner had sexted a 15-year-old girl. Comey then revealed on Nov. 6 – two days before the election, that he had closed the investigation again after finding no evidence of wrongdoing.
Clinton has explicitly blamed Comey’s decision for her election day …read more
Source:: Time – Politics