Former FBI Director James Comey takes his chair to attest during a Senate Intelligence Committee conference on Capitol Hill on Thursday.
Fired FBI Director James Comey’s much-hyped testimony before a Senate Intelligence Committee was a singular Washington conference that indeed lived adult to a billing. And if we didn’t get in line during 4:15 a.m. ET Thursday, as some reportedly did to secure a chair in a Senate Hart Office Building to watch in person, here are some of a highlights:
Comey comes out swinging
From his opening remarks, a dismissed FBI executive done transparent he believes President Trump was not guileless when he settled he dismissed Comey since a FBI was in irregularity and feeble led. “Those were lies, devise and simple,” Comey said, adding that Trump “chose to denounce me and, some-more importantly, a FBI” in those remarks.
Comey schooled of his sudden exclusion while giving a speech, and pronounced he was contemptible he didn’t get a possibility to contend farewell to his former colleagues. “I am so contemptible we didn’t get to contend goodbye to we properly.”
Comey pronounced Trump regularly told him he was doing a good job, “so it confused me when we saw on radio that he indeed dismissed me since of a Russia investigation.”
Comey used a “L word” again while explaining because he motionless to take records during his meetings with a president. After assembly with a president-elect, during Trump Tower in New York, Comey pronounced he “was overtly endangered he competence distortion about a calm of a meeting, so we felt we had to write it down.”
Obstruction of justice?
Comey was asked several times about Trump’s ask to Comey to dump a bureau’s review into former Trump inhabitant confidence confidant Michael Flynn, and either it amounted to an try to impede a probe. Comey pronounced that was adult to special warn Robert Mueller to decide.
But Comey pronounced he did “take as a direction” a president’s difference to meant he should dump a investigation, yet he testified that he refused to do so. He also pronounced it was poignant that Trump told other officials in a Oval Office to leave before observant to Comey that Flynn “was a good guy,” and seeking him to “let this go.”
Comey said, “Why did he flog everybody out of a Oval Office? That to me as an investigator, is a really poignant fact.”
He after pronounced he suspicion Trump’s banishment of him was an bid to impede a FBI’s review into Russian meddling, that he pronounced was “a large deal.”
Good Lord, recover a tapes!
Comey pronounced he was wakeful a boss tweeted Comey “had improved hope” there were no tapes of his conversations with Comey. Comey injected a impulse of levity, exclaiming, “Lordy, we wish there are tapes!” He combined he had no problem with a Trump releasing a tapes, if they exist.
A vital leak
Comey testified that after he was fired, he gave copies of a memos he wrote about his meetings with Trump to “a crony of cave to share” with reporters. Comey added, “I suspicion it competence prompt a appointment of a special counsel.” And indeed it did.
(Comey pronounced he motionless not to directly give a memos to any of a reporters who were collected during a finish of his drive staking out his home, contrast it to “feeding seagulls during a beach.”)
After Comey’s testimony, Trump’s counsel Marc Kasowitz pronounced Comey “admitted that he unilaterally and secretly done unapproved disclosures to a press of absolved communications with a President.”
As NPR’s Scott Horsley reports, a counsel also indicted Comey of misstating a timing of a leak.
“Although Mr. Comey testified he usually leaked a memos in response to a tweet, a open record reveals that a New York Times was quoting from these memos a day before a referenced tweet.”
In fact, Comey’s timeline appears to be correct.
Trump tweeted on Friday, May 12, that “James Comey improved wish that there are no ‘tapes’ of a review before he starts leaking to a press.”
Comey pronounced it was that twitter that stirred him to ask a crony to exhibit a essence of a memo to a contributor a following Tuesday, May 16. The Times ran a story about a memo essence after that day. Although a Times also reported on May 11 — before Trump’s twitter — about Comey’s private cooking with a president, that story done no anxiety to Comey’s attendant memos. New York Times reporters advanced Comey’s timeline on Thursday after Kasowitz’s statement.
Trump is not (or was not) a theme of an FBI investigation
Comey pronounced that as of his exclusion on May 9, Trump was not privately underneath investigation. But he also testified that another member of a FBI’s care group believed that Trump’s control “will tumble within a scope” of a Russia review and was therefore “reluctant” to assure a boss that he was not privately underneath investigation.
When those late-night games locate adult to you
Comey pronounced he was “a small confused” by Sen. John McCain’s line of questioning, and judging by amicable media, he wasn’t alone. McCain seemed to try to bond Comey’s proclamation that he found no reason to suggest Hillary Clinton be prosecuted over her email server with a ongoing review into Russia’s division in a presidential election.
But his indicate wasn’t during all clear, as a senator himself after acknowledged. In a matter after a hearing, he joked that he “got a clarity from Twitter” that his line of doubt “went over people’s heads.” McCain added, “Maybe going brazen we shouldn’t stay adult late examination a Diamondbacks night games.”
McCain pronounced what he was “trying to get during was either Mr. Comey believes that any of his interactions with a President arise to a turn of deterrent of justice.”
King Henry II creates a cameo
It’s not mostly that congressional hearings hark behind to Gothic times, though afterwards again this was not a normal hearing. During doubt by Sen. Angus King about Trump seeking Comey to “let this go,” — a Flynn investigation, that is — Comey pronounced it rang in his ears “as kind of ‘Will no one absolved me of this prying priest?’ “
That’s a line attributed to King Henry II, who was referring to a archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Becket. Some of a king’s supporters interpreted that as a stately edict, and Becket shortly met an black end.