The Comey firing


"President Trump fired FBI Director James B. Comey on Tuesday, at the recommendation of senior Justice Department officials who said he had treated Hillary Clinton unfairly and in doing so damaged the credibility of the FBI and the Justice Department.

The startling development comes as Comey was leading a counterintelligence investigation to determine whether associates of Trump may have coordinated with Russia to interfere with the U.S. presidential election last year. It wasn’t immediately clear how Comey’s ouster will affect the Russia probe, but Democrats said they were concerned that his ouster could derail the investigation."  washpost


For the record I think this was a very foolish thing to do while the FBI is in he midst of several investigations that involve President Trump's equities.  pl 

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118 Responses to The Comey firing

  1. Lars says:

    It is seriously foolish for the reasons stated. This just trows more fuel on a growing brush fire. The nation needs to find out what the Russians did in the recent election and also needs to know if they was aided and abetted by any Americans. The stated reasons for the action are not credible.
    We may very well have the most corrupt administration ever and a lot of sunshine is needed. What Russia did should be considered a hostile action and it needs to be counteracted and made sure that it cannot be repeated.
    I don’t think this can be accomplished without an independent entity looking at this. This should not be a partisan issue. It is an American national security issue.

  2. LeaNder says:

    Yes, curious, considering the supposed reason.
    Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that Comey’s deputy, Andrew McCabe, would be the acting director of the FBI. As a presidential candidate, Trump explicitly criticized Comey and McCabe for their roles in the Clinton probe while at other points praising Comey for his “guts.”
    the guts, or what it may relate to, came admittedly first to mind when the news reached me.
    How would this decision register on his supporters mind, if polled? Maybe not at all, since while he may have helped the Trump camp by going public shortly before the election, he didn’t exactly offer them the desired fruit: lock her up.

  3. turcopolier says:

    LeaNder et al
    SWMBO recommends Sally Yates to be the FBI director. I concur. Trump needs to appoint someone the Dems will trust. pl

  4. Tyler says:

    To be quite fair, the Democrats were going to “investigate” Trump (read: allegate on MSNBC) until the heat death of the sun. Might as well be hung for a cow as a calf.
    Of more interest is the Democratic whiplash on how the flag is falling. I think they should ride the “Russians hacked the election” meme into 2024. I haven’t seen enough of Maxine Waters crazy ass inventing conspiracies out of thin air.

  5. Valissa says:

    It’s about time that Comey was fired, IMO. Diane Feinstein recently admitted there was nothing to prosecute Trump for in a widely cited interview with Wolf Blitzer recently, following meetings she attended with the FBI and CIA. More info on that in my comment here
    The timing of this firing appears to correlate with the recent 96-4 confirmation of the Deputy Attorney General, Rod Rosenstein, who made the recommendation.
    The quote used for this post comes from the first part of the WaPo article. From further down…
    “Officials released a Tuesday memo from the deputy attorney general, Rod J. Rosenstein, laying out the rationale behind Comey’s dismissal and attributing it all to his handling of the Clinton case. Officials said Rosenstein began examining Comey’s conduct shortly after being sworn into office two weeks ago.
    “The FBI’s reputation and credibility have suffered substantial damage, and it has affected the entire Department of Justice,” Rosenstein wrote. “I cannot defend the director’s handling of the conclusion of the investigation of Secretary Clinton’s emails, and I do not understand his refusal to accept the nearly universal judgment that he was mistaken. Almost everyone agrees that the director made serious mistakes; it is one of the few issues that unites people of diverse perspectives.”
    Here is some background on Rosenstein, who is well respected all around…
    Rosenstein Pegged to Bring Experience, Stability to DOJ
    Attorneys are looking to Rosenstein, a lifelong public servant, to bring a dose of stability to the U.S. Department of Justice after the U.S. Senate confirmed him 94-6 as the deputy attorney general Tuesday. President Donald Trump’s Justice Department has already hit a series of speed bumps during its first few months, including the sudden firing of 46 President Barack Obama-era U.S. attorneys, failed attempts to defend the president’s immigration executive orders and Sessions’ recusal from an investigation into possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russia.
    Lawyers who’ve worked with Rosenstein, including superiors, subordinates and defense attorneys, say his no-nonsense leadership style and distaste for politics will help steer the Justice Department through the transition period. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Maryland did not reply to requests for comment, but in interviews with nearly a dozen former colleagues and defense attorneys, Rosenstein, 52, comes across as a lawyer-manager who prioritizes efficiency, wants cases resolved expediently, values detail-oriented work and listens to opposing viewpoints.
    Here is Jonathan Turley’s take…
    I agree that the timing is concerning and legitimately questioned.  However, the Administration may also have waited for the Deputy Attorney General to be confirmed to allow a career prosecutor to review the matter and to concur with the decision. Democrats denounced Comey over his actions regarding the Clinton Administration.  The matter was given to the Deputy Attorney General who was just confirmed recently. 
    President Trump took efforts in his letter state that Comey assured him that he was not under investigation.  He stated that  “While I greatly appreciate you informing me, on three separate occasions, that I am not under investigation, I nevertheless concur with the judgement of the Department of Justice that you are not able to effectively lead the bureau.”
    The White House released a memorandum from Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, a respected career prosecutor.  He found that Comey’s prior conduct did “substantial damage” to the FBI’s “reputation and credibility.”  He noted that the FBI Director is never empowered to supplant federal prosecutors and assume command of the Justice Department” and that his conduct was “a textbook example of what federal prosecutors and agents are taught not to do.”
    Rosenstein served in both Republican and Democratic administrations. He is not viewed as a political hack.

  6. Tyler says:

    Respectfully, no.
    There is no reconciliation with the Left in this country. You are either a tool or an enemy.

  7. O'Bryan says:

    Ahhh Jimmy-boy. We hardly knew ye…

  8. trinlae says:

    Brief but interesting profile of acting FBI director McCabe online here:

  9. iowa steve says:

    I would only add that imho the firing is best understood as Trump conflating his role as the chief executive of a private business with his role as president. He wanted him fired. He had the power to fire him. So he fired him, with little thought–apparently–to the political context.

  10. Eric Newhill says:

    The problem is that there may never have been “a good time” to fire Comey. Are the Ds really going to ever let up on the investigations into Trump, Russia, etc? I doubt it. It’s all they’ve got other than facing the truth that outside of universities and big coastal cities, few like them or their policies. And they are pathologically incapable of facing the truth.
    I approve of the firing. It sends a strong signal that Trump isn’t going to play that game and he will do whatever he thinks is right and necessary regardless of leftist histrionics. He will not be derailed. Excellent. Which swamp creature is next to be left high and dry?

  11. gaikokumaniakku says:

    Various anonymous online sources have claimed that the rank-and-file FBI agents were not happy that Comey declined to prosecute Clinton.
    Julian Assange has exhorted the FBI to leak. The NYPD has exhorted the FBI to do its job.
    There are very few people who trust the USA’s media or the US government. Accusations have been made that Washington DC pizza parlors are involved in human trafficking, and that Clinton is part of that criminal network.
    If any evidence were to come to light that high-ranking politicians were actually involved in human trafficking, many people would call for a purge of established politicians.

  12. Tyler says:

    Of course, Comey showed up to work today cause he couldn’t read intent in his termination letter.

  13. Hood Canal Gardner says:

    Another foolish “20-20” diversion. The Gypse King man/traveling band still have bite mark space on their collective butts. How about the rest of us?

  14. JJackson says:

    “What Russia did should be considered a hostile action and it needs to be counteracted and made sure that it cannot be repeated.”
    What did Russia do that should be considered a hostile act? You seem to know more than I do about this I was not aware that Russia did anything.

  15. notlurking says:

    All I can say to you my friend …..hook, line, and sinker…..

  16. J says:

    I don’t trust Yates any farther than I can throw a bull by the tail. She sure wouldn’t be my recommendation, not for love nor money.
    Look for the most honest, most steadfast current FBI person in the CI field and go with that individual.

  17. Sam Peralta says:

    What Russia did should be considered a hostile action..
    And what exactly did the Russian government do that was hostile? Please provide some credible evidence. And does the US government do the same thing?

  18. Going back to Hoover. the top FBI officials abhorred investigating drugs, and/or organized crime. These illegal activities drive American political corruption IMO especially FBI ops.
    Hoover’s fear was that illegal drugs and/or organized crime might corrupt the FBI itself.
    Thus the DEA and DoJ organized crime strike forces the latter ending because of political pressure.

  19. Allen Thomson says:

    Rushed indeed, leading me to wonder if there’s more than Trump’s pique involved. One possibility is that the FBI was getting close to cutting a deal with Flynn to get him to talk and the WH knew it wouldn’t like what he’d say.

  20. Gene O. says:

    Agree with your SWMBO. Either that or Senator from Georgia, or Governor.

  21. Fred says:

    Well you did say Trump would be impeached early and often. I see that FBI acting Director McCabe’s wife was a Democratic candidate for state senate in Virginia who is well connected to Clinton donors. I don’t think the Republicans are going to find him very impartial. I agree with your prior post that the transcripts of Flynn’s conversations should be declassified and released. That might clear the air a bit.

  22. Barbara Ann says:

    Fox’s take on events, for the record.

  23. Fredw says:

    I see that this happened just about the time that subpoenas for the FBI’s probe of Michael Flynn were being delivered. Any connection?

  24. Ghostship says:

    “The nation needs to find out what the Russians did in the recent election”
    It’s been six months since the election and they (probably FBI, CIA, and NSA) have found nothing, which suggests quite strongly to me that there is nothing to be found. If they’d found the slightest piece of evidence it would have leaked by now. How much longer should this be allowed to drag on for? Until the Democrats are happy? They’ll never be happy because they believe Hillary’s God-given right to be president has been usurped.

  25. DC says:

    At the very least, Trump should have waited until after the Russia investigations to dismiss Comey. Doing it now is like firing the Judge who is overseeing investigations of your company. A clear conflict of interest, revealed, and no other explanation except fear is likely to be convincing to most.
    Trump clearly expects his followers to buy into a variety of alternative explanations for his actions, which will only serve to worsen our political divides. I can only hope that enough Republicans will remember their duty to country and vote for an independent counsel to oversee the FBI’s work on the Russia issue.

  26. b says:

    Comey had acted beyond his realm several times. He should have been stopped much earlier. Better to fire him now that never.
    There is zero evidence for Russian interference in the election. There is zero evidence for any collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign. Senator Feinstein had just confirmed that again.
    The which hunt must be stopped. It is preventing the foreign policy for which Trump was elected.
    He should put someone into the FBI office that everyone can trust, not just the Democrats. Did they win the election or did Trump? Some dry bureaucrat who understands his/her role as an investigating agent of the public prosecutors office. Nothing more, nothing less. Not another J. Edgar Hoover wannabe. Sally Yates would definitely be the wrong person as she has a history with Trump and could never be perceived as non-partisan.

  27. The Guardian comments as follows:-
    All the fuss about election interference is bogus. Nations interfere in each other’s internal affairs all the time. The target country is lucky if it stops at NGO’s and Foundations. I remember listening with astonishment to Mrs Nuland’s famous telephone call. She was not merely interfering in the politics of the Ukraine. She was appointing their next President for them. Where does this sour joke come from – “Why will there never be an American revolution?” “Because there’s no US Embassy there.” I think it comes from South America but it could come from anywhere.
    We in the West interfere in the politics of other countries in order to promote Freedom and Democracy. If the Russians did it maybe they did it in order to save life as we know it – back in 2016 Mr Trump looked far less likely to drift into WW3 than his opponent. Of course, if the Russians did interfere that was plain wrong: but since everyone knows everyone does it all the time there’s not much call for excessive outrage.
    Where it does get edgy is when it’s allies doing it to each other. I don’t mean direct Obama-style appeals to the electorate of an allied country – that’s out in the open and harmless enough. I mean covert attempts to manipulate opinion in order to support a preferred candidate, or to discredit a recently elected leader.
    That is what happened in the case of the US Presidential election. An ex-MI6 intelligence officer, Christopher Steele, compiled a dossier for the express purpose of discrediting Trump when he was a candidate. The dossier was made public after the election and was used to discredit the new President. We were never told who authorised Mr Steele’s activities and why.
    Mr Steele was, if I remember correctly, spirited away to a safe house at the time. He is now back running his business. He was recently approached with a request to testify before the US Senate Intelligence Committee.
    If he does testify I hope he is asked who authorised him to compile the dossier and from what level that authorisation came. I don’t know whether or not the Russians attempted covert interference in the politics of the US but there’s a clear case for asking why we did.

  28. Dr.Puck says:

    Besides the “shooting yourself in the foot” aspect, Trump’s letter to JC, and his tweetstorm today implies he is quite upset that the FBI went easier on HRC than it is currently going on him and his campaign.
    The question in a nutshell, as I see it, is: what does Trump know right now about his the specifics of election-related contacts between members of his campaign staff and Russians?
    If he knows nothing, he is being kept in the dark.
    If he knows that it is all a big nothingburger, then why isn’t he arguing those facts?
    If he knows now that there were communications that constitute explicit evidence of coordination and/or collusion, then. . .he’ll need more than a new paddle.

  29. TonyL says:

    That would be a master stroke. But I’d doubt President Trump is capable of such maneuver.

  30. doug says:

    What I find odd is the seeming political stupidity. Shortly before Trump fired Comey the FBI had to “clarify” his testimony on the Weiner laptop. I was expecting Democrats to have a field day exclaiming how incompetent the FBI Director was. Trump could have let that build up then removed Comey with much less fuss. But Trump quickly squashed that before any buildup occurred.
    Is Trump tired of being POTUS? Suicide by Congress perhaps?
    Alternately, he is sending a very loud message that he is completely unpredictable, rash, and not someone to be estimated by traditional game theory techniques. It’s possible.

  31. Razor says:

    Isn’t that the lady that Trump fired as acting AG? The lady who said she would not implement Trumps’ policies on immigration? If so, it’s hard to see how he would appoint her to FBI director.

  32. Fool says:

    What is not credible about the stated reasons? Would anyone argue that Comey did his job effectively and fairly? I hate Clinton and even I felt bad for her after that late October surprise (not that I think it made a bigger difference than, say, the announcement of 22% average increases for Obamacare premiums that same week; not visiting MI, WI, PA; etc).
    The involvement of the Russians as far as I’m aware — since nothing of evidentiary value has in fact been revealed to We the People — is that a client government of theirs paid Manafort considerable money years earlier, which is a degree of “involvement” that is no more serious than similar dealings with the Podestas (or for that matter the Clinton crony from whom they acquired a fifth of our uranium). If anything btw the “smoke” is coming from Ukraine (remember that this all begins with a Chalupa sounding the alarm in May ’16 when she was researching Manafort); alas, Maddow’s audience probably doesn’t know the difference…
    Trump may very well be leading a corrupt administration, but it has nothing to do with Russia — not that this bothers the corrupt Democrat leadership (minus a few decent ones) who have no ideas of how to serve and lead the American people without running it by their corporate or NGO daddies. As a result, they have turned this into their own sleazy partisan Benghazi circus; “death by a thousand paper cuts” as I heard one CNN bot say last night. (For the record, I am registered as a Democrat.)

  33. robt willmann says:

    The Russian Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov, is meeting with Secretary of State Tillerson this morning in Washington D.C. They came out to do the window dressing to announce the meeting, and someone in the press gathering loudly asks, “Does the Comey firing cast a shadow over your talks, gentlemen?” Lavrov pauses and replies, “Was he fired? You are kidding, you are kidding.”–

  34. BabelFish says:

    That would be a smart move. Almost brilliant. I wonder if Jeff Sessions could live with that?

  35. Fool says:

    Colonel Lang,
    I wouldn’t be surprised if he picked Ray Kelly, who served three terms as NYPD commissioner under Bloomberg and was endorsed by Schumer for FBI head in 2011.

  36. old gun pilot says:

    Either her or Preet Brahara.

  37. Virginia Slim says:

    It shouldn’t be a partisan issue, but of course it is, because everything is political in American society today. You can’t drink a can of Coke or be seen reading Hemingway without it being a political statement.
    As turcopolier stated, Trump almost certainly has to appoint a Democrat (or, at the very least, let McCabe serve out the remainder of Comey’s term).
    What a mess.

  38. DianaLC says:

    I am happy to see Comey go. This is the first time in my long life that I’ve ever recognized the face of the FBI Director. Well, yest, I did know what Hoover looked like from history texts and from the Kennedy years while I was still in high school, and that was also scandalous for my then young and more innocent self.
    The position is not supposed to be political. When Comey came out with his statement about the conclusion of the HRC email investigation, I was convinced that he made the decision he did to protect Lynch from having to answer questions about the Phoenix airport meeting with Bill and from having to explain why HRC would not be held accountable for doing the absolutely stupid things she did with her email system or having to face the justice that any peon State Dept. employee would have had to face if he/she had done the same thing.
    Comey’s second thing about the Weiner laptop was also a “cover our asses” moment.
    I feel that the FBI people who are doing the actual work with the current investigations will be able to carry on without Comey. They will probably benefit from not having him in the spotlight from now on. And I will be much happier knowing that the FBI will now be dealing with an AG who will follow the Constitutional guidelines.

  39. DianaLC says:

    I prefer to have someone whom both parties will trust, especially at this point I don’t trust either political party.

  40. kao_hsien_chih says:

    Part of the disturbing trend towards “lawlessness” in presidency, I think.
    By “lawlessness,” I don’t mean that what presidents do increasingly often is necessarily “illegal.” But presidents are increasingly unmoored from the stuff of politics and society so that they are prone to do reckless things. While I fully support the proposition by the colonel below that Trump would be wise to appoint someone whom the Democrats would trust, I hesitate to expect it. Of course, what bothers me is that Trump, in particular, was elected precisely because he is unmoored from the stuff of normal politics–since that “stuff” is, understandably and justifiably, deeply mistrusted.
    Assuming things don’t fall completely apart during the present administration, then what? Will Trump be succeeded by an American version of what I suspect Macron to be in France, i.e. someone who is just as reckless but in the opposite direction? In a sense, that is what we’ve had before–Bush followed by Obama followed by Trump, unmoored after unmoored, reckless after reckless, even if in the ever changing direction. Is the Second Coming near (ref to Yates).

  41. Bill H says:

    I do not wish to be contentious, but in the first paragraph you say that, “[t]he nation needs to find out what the Russians did…” and in the second that, “[w]hat Russia did should be considered a hostile action…”
    This is sort of typical of much of the media discourse, calling for investigation while stating an assumption of guilt. Senator Feinstein admits that there is still no objective evidence that Russia did interfere in the election at all, much less that the Trump campaign was party to it.

  42. A.Pols says:

    This is a joke of course, but maybe along that vein he should appoint Hillary…
    But then again: “Keep your friends close and your enemies closer”.

  43. sid_finster says:

    By firing Comey, Trump has injected new life into Russiagate.
    Even though there is just as much evidence to suggest that Mickey Mouse murdered George Washington as there is to support Russiagate, those who want to find something will insist that Comey’s firiing proves that there *must* be something there. The fact that a few months ago, Democrats themselves insisted that Comey *must* be a Russian spy has already been forgotten. He is now their New Best Friend and an Official Martyr to Troof.
    Expect the Truimp Administration, now and for the foreseeable future, to be consumed with endless hearings, fishing expeditions, blocked appointments and witchhunts. Anyone who ever talked to a Russian person ever will be held up breathlessly as “proof” that Trump must be a Russian tool. Those who want to believe will profess to do so.
    Of course, Trump’s erstwhile friends and their Deep State allies will helpfully suggest that Trump start a war or two so that he can “prove” that he is in fact his own man.
    Trump has already shown himself to be succeptible to such suggestions. Do the math.

  44. Laura says:

    Amen to that. But an Administration that fires someone while they are on an agency trip by taking a letter to the head office AFTER the media has put it on the tube, isn’t caring about such things as trust or even optics. It’s a TV Show: “You’re fired!” Until the Congress puts on its American Big Boy pants (which will probably be done by the women in Congress first), Trumpworld will roll heedlessly over our national interest on all levels.
    They don’t have the courage or the wit to recommend Sally Yates.

  45. Laura says:

    turcopolier — Roger Stone is in the mix, this is from a Politico report and the “You’re fired” meme pops up again. “While shock dominated much of the FBI and the White House, the mood was more elated at Roger Stone’s house in Florida. Several Stone allies and friends said Stone, who has been frequently mentioned in the investigation, encouraged the president to fire Comey in conversations in recent weeks.
    On Twitter, Stone signaled praise for the move by posting an image of Trump from The Apprentice saying, “You’re fired.””
    I wonder when this stops being a TV show to the Administration?

  46. turcopolier says:

    You who oppose Sally Yates don’t “get it.” The FBI will continue to investigate and there is no way she could suppress the result, whatever it is. Trump must have Democrat “buy in” on the result. THAT is what matters. pl

  47. TV says:

    Too clever by half.
    Why would a rational person give yuuuuuge power to someone who is clearly their enemy?

  48. John_Frank says:

    fyi Text of President’s letter to FBI Director Comey telling him he is fired, along with enclosures
    Suggest people read the material, especially the brief of the Deputy AG.
    As people know, the FBI Director reports to the Deputy AG, who reports to the AG, who reports to the President.
    The Senate Democrats delayed the appointment of the AG and the Deputy AG, who has only been on the job for about two weeks.
    According to James Comey’s testimony, the FBI began running an investigation into Russian interference and so forth in July of 2016, but did not report the matter to the requisite Congressional oversight committees until March, 2017.
    Until the Deputy AG was in place, the process could not begin to decide whether Mr. Comey should stay or go as FBI Director.
    Will Mr. Comey’s removal have any bearing on the investigation? No, given that it is being directed by the Deputy AG, who by all accounts is well respected by everyone.
    (The media claims coming from the AP and NYT based on anonymous sources that Comey was looking for more money (resources) to conduct the investigation has been flatly denied by the DOJ spokesperson who spoke with the Deputy AG.
    As to Ms. Yates, no. She clearly is not suitable. Far too partisan IMV.
    The President has to nominate someone who will be good for the FBI and the country.
    P.S. According to reports, people are already being interviewed

  49. John_Frank says:

    Ms. Yates is a total non-starter.

  50. AnR says:

    Bravo sir

  51. Eric Newhill says:

    Do you really believe that the Dem.s will ever buy into anything that helps Trump. IMO, they are pathologically incapable of that.
    Schumer had recently stated that all confidence in Comey had evaporated. Trump then fires Comey and Schumer comes right back saying that it’s because Comey was getting close to nailing Team Trump. I don’t see how these people can be expected to ever be reasonable.
    IMO, Trump would do well to purge anyone with Dem connections and he might as well not look for Dem buy in on anything. Not because he would be attempting to avoid unfavorable results of the investigation – I don’t think there will be anything of the sort – but in order to avoid obfuscation of future policy and direction. And to clear the path to investigation and prosecution of Dem.s. Perhaps Clinton or Obama should there be grounds and/or need.
    The Dem.s are engaging in no quarter asked/no quarter given political war to the death. Trump must respond in kind.

  52. Annem says:

    But….be aware of the “wag the dog” moves taking shape in Trumpdom. He has learned the lesson that military action not only improves his poll numbers, but is a great distraction. The Comey scandal has been followed by his announcement that he is sending thousands more troops to Afghanistan, presumably to fight the Taliban, though he used his big bomb on AQ! Stand by.

  53. Valissa says:

    Hey Tyler, good to hear from you!
    I agree with you 100%. The constant heavily negative, biased and disapproving portrayal of Trump in the predominantly liberal establishment MSM has been a big part of creating a collective emotional hysteria, a lynch mob mentality. That’s how propaganda works, if you keep repeating long enough distortions, lies and misinformation about a person or issue most people will come to believe it. Unless they have other sources of information that challenge that.
    I never thought I would say this, but thank god for right wing media!

  54. Fred says:

    “But presidents are increasingly unmoored from the stuff of politics and society so that they are prone to do reckless things.” No Presidents are never unmoored from politics.

  55. MRW says:

    One possibility is that the FBI was getting close to cutting a deal with Flynn to get him to talk and the WH knew it wouldn’t like what he’d say.
    Comey wasn’t the entire FBI, and I doubt that should it true that the FBI was close to cutting deal with Flynn that Comey’s firing would derail it. Why would it? McCabe can complete that agency decision.

  56. MRW says:

    I agree. Besides, I’ll bet Rosenstein has some suggestions and is offering them.

  57. Lars says:

    It is widely known that the hacking of emails was done by Russians. The big question is whether there were Americans colluding with them. Interfering in the US election by a foreign power should be regarded as hostile.

  58. Lars says:

    I am sure it will all come out in the end and how much guilt to assign. It should concern all Americans that a foreign power was trying to manipulated their election process. Mr. Trump has now turbo charged the effort to investigate this by firing the head of the investigation.

  59. VietnamVet says:

    James Comey’s firing and the maneuvering to blame Russia for the Democrat’s 2016 election debacle is all about providing a circus to hide the obvious top level corruption in Washington DC. It obfuscates their criminality. The decisions made since the turn of the century were solely for selfish reasons at the bequest of the wealthy elite and not in the best interest of America’s citizens. The new FBI director will be a member of the cabal. The only question is will Donald Trump appoint a nationalist or will he be forced to select a corporate globalist?
    A special prosecutor should be appointed to investigate the corruption. It will never happen.

  60. MRW says:

    Why doesn’t someone point out the obvious? The Deputy Attorney General (DAG) is the FBI Director’s immediate superior. He was the on making the recommendation. This wasn’t Trump doing eeny-meeny-miney-moe Who Will I Fire Today? over an Egg McMuffin on the second floor at 3 AM.
    I’m fairly certain that the DAG knows the status and substance of Comey’s investigations so far. Why would he sully the department’s and his own reputation further compounding the lack of faith, trust, and legal reach he was concerned about by ditching a director working for him who could be about to make an explosive revelation of profound malfeasance with documented evidence (as some hyperbolic pundits are alleging exists with no proof)?
    Much ado about nothing, and keeps the Russia-Done-It fantasy in the air.

  61. robt willmann says:

    An interesting item is in a story today in the Washington Post newspaper, to the extent the Wash Post can be believed. It says that Comey asked the Justice Department last week for more resources for the FBI investigation of possible collusion between the Trump presidential campaign and the Russian government.
    “Last week, then-FBI Director James B. Comey requested more resources from the Justice Department for his bureau’s investigation into collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government, according to two officials with knowledge of the discussion.
    Comey, who was fired by President Trump on Tuesday, made the request in a meeting last week with Rod J. Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general, and briefed the chair and Democratic ranking member of the Senate Intelligence Committee on Monday, the officials said.”
    More “resources”. Empaneling a grand jury, extra money, applications for search and surveillance warrants, or, perhaps, access to archived NSA data and recordings?

  62. iowa steve says:

    And if the FBI would have exonerated Trump, the dems would have howled that the fix was in, and that Comey should have been fired yesterday, literally.

  63. novicius says:

    Surely there’s another person who could fill the bill? Any feedback from the rank and file? Those who actually still work there, not yet retired? I’d be interested to hear their feelings about the firing. I didn’t like the public way the firing was accomplished. To let Comey find out about it on tv was pretty classless in my opinion.

  64. turcopolier says:

    You are not the first to accuse me of excessive cleverness. But, IMO what Trump needs is to have an enemy oversee the investigation. pl

  65. Valissa says:

    Col Lang, please address MRW’s point about the Deputy Attorney General being the one making the recommendation. This DAG, Rod Rosenstein, was recently confirmed 94-6. Isn’t that a record for this administration? Can’t get much more bipartisan than that.

  66. turcopolier says:

    i have no problem with the dismissal of Comey. the question now is who will succeed him and what effect that will have on the unity of the country. pl

  67. Stephanie says:

    Rosenstein made no recommendation. His memo builds a case, but he recommends no course of action and does not ask for Comey’s dismissal, never mind his immediate dismissal. From what I understand Rosenstein is a competent fellow. Highly unlikely he told Trump that Comey had to go immediately under circumstances that would be bound to put the motives for the firing into question.
    If Trump had canned Comey in January, it would have been a smart move. But he saw no reason to do so in January. Now, of course, Trump has made a bad situation worse, out of what appears to be a colossal political miscalculation (he thought both Republicans and Dems would approve, although Schumer warned him that he was making a yuge mistake).

  68. turcopolier says:

    I don’t doubt tat the Russians sought to influence the outcome of our elections. We do it all the time and you must know that. Do you feel that our “exceptionalism” allows us to do this but not others? Did Obama not seek to influence the outcome of the French election? pl

  69. PeterHug says:

    I’m not sure he has an enemy as such in Yates – he has someone who would be inclined to be skeptical, and impartial enough to follow the facts wherever they go, no matter how unpopular that turns out to be.
    And in that, I agree that she would be precisely who he needs.
    I truly doubt that he will be able to see that, though.

  70. FourthAndLong says:

    Hilary ? ROFLMAO. Good one.

  71. kao_hsien_chih says:

    As I see it, “politics,” at least politics that works, is a process whose legitimacy and credibility is not questioned by any major faction in a country. A president is, in this sense, “unmoored” from politics if he cannot work with people who are not of his faction. I don’t think we have had a president who hasn’t been unmoored from politics possibly since Bill Clinton, or at least, the immediate aftermath of 9/11, and the degree of unmooredness has been growing since. I will agree with you if, somehow, Trump can work with a large number of Democrats to get things done, or if you could dig up an instance where Barack Obama could work with a large number of Republicans productively. But the truth today is that, even if a Trump or an Obama were to agree with the other side 100% on the substance, the fact that they are a Trump or an Obama is a good enough reason to refuse cooperation with them and revile them for very large numbers of people in the country. No one seems to be “big” enough to bridge this gap, and, as per the colonel’s latest post, we are looking dangerously like the way things were in 1859–and not just United States, but pretty much the entire Western World. Maybe it’s not the presidents being unmoored from “politics.” Maybe it’s “politics” being unmoored from presidents (or the people, or whoever). Same difference. If people can’t agree to do politics together, even if they they may not agree on what to do with this politics, then that ain’t “politics” at all.

  72. JJackson says:

    Lars I have a problem with the ‘widely know’ bit. Would that be same widely know as Iraq’s WMDs, Iran’s nuclear weapons program and Assad’s use of Sarin?

  73. Valissa says:

    Col. Lang, I don’t think this is a time of unity, and trying to make it so will only make things worse, IMO.
    How can their be unity given the lack of objective and fair news reporting? Given the intense tribalism? You can’t have unity unless people of differing political stripes can agree on at least some facts.
    Freedom is fractious… it’s important that people and groups be able to disagree. Vehemently, if necessary. The alternative is totalitarianism. Historically speaking, genuine unforced unity is almost as rare as unicorns.
    BTW, there is a full moon tonight 😉

  74. MRW says:

    Stephanie, incorrectamundo. Rosenstein’s final paragraph in his letter to Jeff Sessions reads:
    Although the President has the power to remove an FBI director, the decision should not be taken lightly. I agree with the nearly unanimous opinions of former Department officials. The way the Director handled the conclusion of the email investigation was wrong. As a result, the FBI is unlikely to regain public and congressional trust until it has a Director who understands the gravity of the mistakes and pledges never to repeat them. Having refused to admit his errors, the Director cannot be expected to implement the necessary corrective actions.
    Read the entire letter here:

  75. Eric Newhill says:

    Perhaps a compromise. Appoint a loyal conservative as Dir. FBI, but appoint Yates as a special independent investigator for only the Russian connection thing?

  76. Dr.Puck says:

    Most of Trump’s cabinet are corporate globalists, and these include many Wall Street multi-millionaires.
    Does this allow us to suspect that Trump knows who butters his bread?
    Trumpcare was designed to do the opposite of his promise of providing better coverage for his base. Trump signed a budget with little committed toward the wall. Point is: MAGA nationalism is no longer on the main track.
    Meanwhile, 5,000 more troops for the graveyard of empires, and, aid for the Kurds. . .

  77. Jack says:

    Nice to see you post. Missed your take on things. Fascinating seeing the Dems twist themselves in pretzels. They couldn’t wait to get Comey’s scalp and now that happens he is the martyr.

  78. Barbara Ann says:

    Re “If he knows that it is all a big nothingburger, then why isn’t he arguing those facts?”
    Countering the unrelenting anti-Trump propaganda machine is a Sisyphean task. Recognizing this fact, Bannon counter insurgency doctrine seems to counsel ignoring it as far as possible, so as to focus on swamp-draining activities & pushing the alt facts. The result so far is a feedback loop of every increasing hysteria on one side and ever more contrarian political behaviour on the other.
    This is an administration that came in with the ‘United 93 Election’ mindset and a bunker mentality from the get go. Likewise HRC camp *knows* they won really and are out for blood at all costs. The phrase ‘partisan politics’ hardly does this situation justice.

  79. Keith Harbaugh says:

    Re Colonel Lang’s comment that

    I [Pat Lang} think this was a very foolish thing to do
    while the FBI is in the midst of several investigations
    that involve President Trump’s equities.

    FWIW I agree totally.
    I just watched Sarah Huckabee Sanders 2017-05-10 (day after the Comey firing) 30 minute press conference:
    Watching her struggle with answering all those questions
    about the facts, and motivations and thoughts of President Trump,
    made it abundantly clear that
    President Trump needs to man up
    and hold a press conference himself

    to answer the questions that people quite legitimately have
    about why he took the profound act of firing
    a person responsible for investigating him.
    Can’t Trump see the problem here?
    As I said, he needs to man up and face all those beastly media types.
    I’ve certainly done my share of criticizing the media,
    but in this case they really do have the right and I believe the duty
    to put Trump himself on the hot seat,
    and see how he responds.
    Anything less will only let doubts from all sides,
    even those who agree with him on many issues,
    BTW, Politico has a nice story on the background for the decision:
    Behind Comey’s firing:
    An enraged Trump, fuming about Russia

    The president deliberated for more than a week
    before ousting the FBI chief
    who was investigating Trump associates.
    By Josh Dawsey : 05/10/17 12:02 AM EDT, Updated 05/10/17 01:06 PM EDT

  80. Tyler says:

    Real life has been off the chain recently and SST has become difficult to navigate on my phone, to say nothing of posting.

  81. Will.2718 says:

    Patrick Fitzgerald

  82. steve says:

    Just not seeing the need to urgently fire the guy in the middle of an investigation. I think that is almost w/o precedent. If they had presented new evidence of some misdeed, then fire him. Otherwise let him finish leading the investigation. Once Trump hired Flynn, against advice, and then had to fire him, Trump had to accept that there would be a more general investigation. Would the Democrats have carried this out and asked for 8 separate investigations like the Republicans did with Benghazi? Maybe, but you fire Comey after the FBI investigation is done. When the Democrats decide to have another agency investigate just like the GOP kept finding new entities to investigate Comey wouldn’t have a role anyway.

  83. Ingolf Eide says:

    I can see a kind of logic to appointing someone who is clearly not a Trump partisan. However, mightn’t it be more useful to appoint someone who is not a partisan at all? If independent, professional, well respected individuals were appointed to critical positions like the Director of the FBI then maybe a slow background healing of the current partisan bloodshed could at least begin. The politics of these and other matters should be handled by Trump himself and those within the administration to whom he delegates authority.
    Ron Rosenstein (the new Deputy Attorney General) may be a good example of the right kind of appointment. He seems respected across the political divide and on my reading his letter to the Attorney General regarding Comey (also raised by Valissa earlier) was calm, prudent and well argued. The points he made about Comey’s behaviour surrounding the Clinton emails and the ways in which that damaged both the FBI and the DOJ seem both reasonable and important.
    As for the politics, maybe the songsheet from which the administration should be singing is that they’re trying to get on with what they were elected to do in the face of what looks very much like hysteria on the part of their opponents and much of the media. You can’t reason with hysteria since evidence (or lack of it) don’t count until it wears itself out. So, while waiting for the fever to eventually break they’ll press on with the important things as best they can in this mad atmosphere. Like, whereever necessary replacing partisans or incompetents with low-key, experienced, nonpolitical and useful people who can start to rebuild a properly functioning America. Like trying to damp down discord internationally and cooperate wherever possible to fight terrorism and other ills. Like etc etc . . .
    The Russiagate allegations and investigations might best be dealt with by taking a standard, simple line. Repeat as needed “there’s no there there as should be apparent so much intensive, fruitless investigation” and then go on to say “however, if you’re so set on pursuing this obsession we can’t stop you so carry on, do your worst, get it out of your system.” (Always presuming there really isn’t any there there of course.)

  84. Phil Cattar says:

    turcopolier.In all due respect .I think the Vegas odds of Trump picking Yates would be 500 to 1 against…………….She is a born and bred Alantan of privilege….I watched the hearing………..Ive lived in Atlanta around these “types”..IMHO she lives in her own self reinforcing mind…………….She would try too hard to be a “star”…………We live in an age of celebrity she could not resist the lure of it…………Just my opinion………..

  85. ked says:

    it’s all a show to this particular head case. he is bringing himself down out of aversion to respect for his country and countrymen. so be it.

  86. ked says:

    He feels better about himself whenever he can treat others like shit.

  87. ked says:

    well, at least overturning Obamacare ain’t goin’ nowhere.

  88. Phil Cattar says:

    One more point on Sally.She literally” showed her colors” by showing up in a purple dress for the hearing.Read Tyler Durden’s piece on Zero Hedge dated 11/12/2016.The Clintons started the “purple movement ” of resistance here in the US after Mrs Clinton lost.A mumber of liberal men and women now wear the colors.With the men on TV it is usually a tie.

  89. Tyler says:

    “Comey shouldn’t have been fired in the middle of an investigation”
    OF WHAT? Democratic fever dreams? Making excuses why Borg Grandma wasn’t elected? Get real, people. There’s a pretty good body of evidence that:
    -Comey was going to use “da Russians” as a pretext to keep his job, thinking Trump wouldn’t fire him if there was a hint of any sort of “investigation”
    -The Democrats/MSM (I repeat myself) would have had a stroke no matter what Trump did
    Put together this broken pot of a county. You can’t. We are in the middle of a cold civil war.

  90. LondonBob says:

    The old mafia boys always claimed they had compromising photos of Hoover, as well as him being on the payroll. Given Hoover had the FBI deny the mafia existed until RFK started his investigations I think we can put a lot of credence in those claims. Comey was getting very Hooveresque with his obvious attempts to have the bogus Russia thing hang indefinitely over Trump’s head. The agents wanted to charge Clinton, Comey overrode them. He had to go, and he went as soon as Rosenstein was in place. Bravo.

  91. turcopolier says:

    Walrus, another battle-scarred former businessman, may want to comment. there is a certain type of narcissist predatory business person who just loves being cruel aa Trump was to Comey. pl

  92. turcopolier says:

    Obama was and is just as self centered, but he lacked the personality for directly cruel action. He is more the “fine Florentine hand” type. pl

  93. Lars says:

    No doubt the US is not blameless in trying to influence elections elsewhere. The difference here is how it was done and the technology available. As far as I know, the US has not tried to do anything on the scale of what the Russians have done here and recently in France. To me the most important issue is finding out what they did and how they did it so that the next election cannot be compromised.

  94. turcopolier says:

    1- From a lifetime of experience I tell you that tinkering with foreign elections is a major activity of the US government and it has been thus ever since our covert interventions in western European elections just after WW2. Your accusations of Russian escalation are completely unjustified. Which is more effective social media or owning foreign newspapers, TV stations and editors as we have done for many decades. This is the game of nations. 2. There is no evidence that the Russians “compromised” the 2016 election, none whatever. This line of baloney is just left wing hand wringing. pl

  95. jld says:

    Aww.. C’mon, evidence please, no kindergarten repetitive “arguments”.

  96. Fred says:

    The Democrats failed to defend America from the Russians. We therefore need to put Democrats in charge of finding out how Democrats failed to protect the election of that Democrat who should be in the White House.

  97. Morongobill says:

    How about William Bratton for the top job at the FBI?

  98. Jack says:

    The GOP are stupid to try to own it. Obamacare is already imploding on its own as predicted by many. It does not need any assistance from the Republicans to collapse. Obama bekieved that all the pain would only be really evident after he left office, but Obamacare began failing within the first year as insurers experienced massive losses.

  99. Jack says:

    “There is no evidence that the Russians “compromised” the 2016 election, none whatever.”
    The Democrats are living in a bubble. They keep attributing their electoral losses to external factors without making any effort to understand why they keep losing states. If they spent even half their effort on why voters are electing their opponents maybe they could get ahead. But apparently their delusional belief in their “rightness” is not shared by many voters as they have consistently lost states all through Obama’s presidency.
    Hillary complaining about everything and everybody for losing to even Trump, except herself and her condescending campaign, epitomizes the Democrats inability to accept responsibility and make significant changes to attract voters. IMO, the Democrats made a big mistake in rigging their primary to knock Sanders out of the nomination. I live in Democrat country and Sanders won my county in the primary. The many who I know who voted for Hillary did so purely because they believed she was a shoo-in, not because they liked her or her track record.

  100. Dante Alighieri says:

    If Trump had nothing to fear from his Russian connections he could easily prove it, e.g. by declassifying the Flynn/Kislyak wiretaps. There would have been no need to fire Comey. But if the fact is that Trump personally directed the Flynn calls (the most reasonable assumption) then the firing of Comey falls into place.

  101. Marko says:

    I’d prefer to see him pick someone currently in the ranks of the FBI. I could live with Gowdy. Patrick Fitzgerald I’d like. Please not Guiliani , Christie , Grassley, or Clarke. And McCabe needs to go.

  102. turcopolier says:

    Dante Alighieri
    The problem with your “argument” is that there was nothing illegal, immoral, or unethical about Flynn’s telephone talks. And Trump began by telling the world that Flynn was just doing his hob. pl

  103. Stephanie says:

    MRW, I did read it before I posted. As I wrote previously, Rosenstein built a case. As the paragraph you quote demonstrates, he made no recommendation as to what Trump and Sessions should do and I’m sure that omission was intentional.
    This morning we are hearing that Rosenstein threatened to quit because the White House was attempting to shift the responsibility for an action that has backfired badly to him in exactly the same way you are doing.
    In any case, it’s beside the point. Even if Rosenstein had recommended a specific course of action – which he did not — any president is perfectly capable of ignoring such recommendations from subordinates if he doesn’t agree with them. This was the president’s decision to make.

  104. alba etie says:

    Hi Tyler
    This is not a Left -Right framing issue . President Trump needs to release his tax returns
    immediately and assure all of us he is not profiting from his office . I also am
    confident that eventually we will know the full scope of the Russian interference
    in our election 2016

  105. Fred says:

    Comey got fired for screwing up the investigation of Hilary’s email server. I believe the deputy AG phrased it as “The Direct was wrong to usurp the Attorney General’s authority on July 5, 2016 and announce his conclusion that the case should be closed without prosecution.” That’s got nothing to do with Flynn.

  106. Sam Peralta says:

    Col. Lang
    Apparently it is now becoming de facto “criminal” to speak with the Russian government or accept Russian investment in a business. I wish the MSM would do the same for Saudi Arabia and the Izzies.
    This post by Josh Marshall, a Democrat partisan, is a good example of the “Russian conspiracy” derangement that we see in the media and in the DC political circus.
    “I wanted to add some context to one of the more surreal moments of this surreal day. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov met first with Secretary of State Tillerson and then a short time later with President Trump in the Oval Office.
    This is not standard procedure.”

  107. Thanks and at least one Trump enterprise paid a $10 million fine for money laundering Russian organized crime/oligarch money.

  108. Keith Harbaugh says:

    Colonel Lang wrote:

    From a lifetime of experience I tell you that
    tinkering with foreign elections
    is a major activity of the US government…

    I don’t doubt you in the slightest, but it would seem very useful
    if you could provide a reference to a published book
    which you believe accurately describes what you just claimed.
    Again, this is not to dispute you,
    but merely to note the usefulness of published references,
    especially in argumentation.

  109. turcopolier says:

    I am not a scholar. You know that. I am a time traveler like the wretch, James Clapper. While the dilettantes in INSCOM were politicking with each other I was doing things. if i told you of these things a two person FBI team would be knocking on my door do not want to see two of them together. Take it or leave it. pl

  110. Valissa says:

    There are numerous books at Amazon by reputable authors on this topic. If you spent a little time researching on the internet, I’m sure you find a book or web post that is credible enough for you.
    To start you off… from an interview on NPR…
    Database Tracks History Of U.S. Meddling In Foreign Elections

  111. TonyL says:

    “For the record I think this was a very foolish thing to do while the FBI is in he midst of several
    investigations that involve President Trump’s equities. pl”
    I agreed with Col Lang. Don’t you?

  112. Keith Harbaugh says:

    Valissa, you miss the point.
    There are plenty of books at Amazon,
    just as there are plenty of opinions on the Internet.
    I, and I believe the general public,
    frankly do not have the expertise to judge
    which are most credible on the subject Colonel Lang mentioned.
    How on earth would I know which books
    on the subject of cross-national political meddling
    are a pack of lies and which are accurate?
    But thanks for the link; does your providing it mean
    you vouch for the accuracy of Dov Levin’s database?
    And as to the importance of the topic,
    if one wants to make the argument “everyone does it”
    (where “it” is
    “trying to influence the policies of other states or nations”)
    it is important to have a reliable, accurate proof of that assertion.

  113. turcopolier says:

    Keith Harbaugh
    “In 1954, at the height of US concern about the threat from international communism, President Eisenhower appointed a panel to make recommendations regarding covert political action as an instrument of foreign policy. The panel, named after its chairman, General Jimmy Doolittle, included the following statement in its report:
    It is now clear that we are facing an implacable enemy whose avowed objective is world domination by whatever means and at whatever costs. There are no rules in such a game. Hitherto acceptable norms of human conduct do not apply. If the US is to survive, longstanding American concepts of “fair play” must be reconsidered. We must develop effective espionage and counterespionage services and must learn to subvert, sabotage and destroy our enemies by more clever, more sophisticated means than those used against us. It may become necessary that the American people be made acquainted with, understand and support this fundamentally repugnant philosophy.”
    The above essay is from the CIA’s house magazine. You need to grow up. The US is no different from any other country in the business of covert political action. YES!! We all do it. pl

  114. Tyler says:

    No, because there would be no end to “investigations”, a word that has been beaten to mean “someone might maybe possibly look at this in the future”.
    Comey was a creature of DC and deserved his shit canning. Every bit of it.

  115. Tyler says:

    Lol come off of it mate.

  116. Keith Harbaugh says:

    An informative comparison of Trump’s 2017 firing of FBI Director Comey
    to Nixon’s 1973 firing of firing of Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox:
    Comey & The Saturday Night Massacre
    by Patrick Buchanan, 2017-05-15
    Buchanan certainly has first-hand knowledge of the firing of Cox;
    he was a “special assistant” to Nixon at the time.
    His current column points out the very significant differences between
    (the context of) the two firings.

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