FBI Director James Comey On His Firing: ‘Fairly Funny Prank’
News of President Trump’s firing of the FBI director James Comey was so sudden and unbelievable that even the Director himself found it hard to believe at first.
In LA for a speaking engagement, Comey, according to the New York Times, considered it a prank – “Mr. Comey was addressing a group of F.B.I. employees in Los Angeles when a television in the background flashed the news that he had been fired. In response, Mr. Comey laughed, saying he thought it was a fairly funny prank. Then his staff started scurrying around in the background and told Mr. Comey that he should step into a nearby office… Shortly thereafter, a letter from Mr. Trump was delivered to the F.B.I.’s headquarters, just seven blocks from the White House.”
This report is another example of how Comey’s firing, while as per the Justice Department’s rationale, had been planned so erratically and suddenly that no one had any idea or warning whatsoever.
Twitter was a good source to confirm that the FBI was completely taken by shock by this sudden decision.
NBC News: Multiple senior FBI and Justice officials say there was NO knowledge of Trump's announcement ahead of the release by White House.
— Tom Winter (@Tom_Winter) May 9, 2017
CNN Justice Correspondent on-air now saying his phone currently blowing up with texts from FBI sources asking him if the Comey news is true
— Asawin Suebsaeng (@swin24) May 9, 2017
— Tom Namako (@TomNamako) May 9, 2017
But the FBI weren’t the only ones taken by surprise. Even the Congress was blindsided by the sudden decision by the Trump administration.
Top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-California), said, “President Trump called me at 5:30 p.m. and indicated he would be removing Director Comey, saying the FBI needed a change.”
The White House didn’t waste much time after the phone call, taking all of twenty minutes to make the announcement.
It wasn’t any different with the Republicans, as they were taken by equal surprise –
Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn, asked how he learned the #Comey news: "On my iPhone while I was having a meeting…it was a surprise."
— Emma Loop (@LoopEmma) May 9, 2017
As we discussed earlier on how Trump’s actions are so similar to Nixon during Watergate, the timing of this action is extremely unusual. Comey has been fired on the basis of his investigation, or lack of thereof, into the Hillary Clinton emails. Unsurprisingly, no major developments have been found in that investigation for months…so why now?
*Cough* RUSSIA! *Cough*
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