Three years into a ten-year appointment as FBI Director, there has been a lot of question surrounding whether James Comey will stay or go now that Trump is here. In a fascinating decision, Trump said yesterday that he is keeping Comey.
Somehow, it makes sense – after all, Trump and Comey have become two of the most controversial people in the news, and they have survived some rough and tumble politics, so they have a lot in common.
In fact, yesterday Trump said about Comey, “he’s become more famous than me.” This is not a typical Trump line, and there is reason to believe this remark itself indicates that Trump really likes Comey. It is not like Trump to even hint at sharing the limelight with anyone, yet he does lavish praise in symbolic ways on those special few he likes most.
While it is common knowledge that Trump likes to make stars, his star-maker power was not suspected to have been aimed at someone like Comey. A more typical example of Trump’s star-making acumen might be found in one of his top White House assistants – Omarosa. However, the comment from Trump indicates that, perhaps in a surreptitious way, Trump has indeed turned Comey into some kind of star.
During the election campaign, Republicans and Democrats had in turn roundly denounced both Trump and FBI director James Comey, for numerous reasons. But, Comey was severely criticized for his role in the US presidential campaign. It was those now infamous announcements made by the director of the FBI on the case of the e-mails of Hillary Clinton that set everyone on fire.
According to the New York Times, which relies on anonymous sources and Ouija boards, Donald Trump told James Comey in January, during their first interview at the Trump Tower in New York, that he hoped he would stay in office. “And the entourage of Donald Trump made it clear to James Comey that the president did not want him to leave,” the paper added.
The FBI director forwarded the information to regional police officials at a weekly conference call. Yet none of the good vibrations between Trump and Comey has stifled musings about Comey’s role in the outcome of the election.
The fact is that Comey has been a supremely well-respected personality so far, since being named head of the FBI in 2013 by President Barack Obama. The FBI director is appointed for ten years, but the US president has the power to dismiss him. In early July, James Comey had ulcerated the Republicans by recommending not to prosecute Hillary Clinton on her emails sent through a private server, while noting that the former Secretary of State had nevertheless shown “extreme negligence.”
On July 5, 2016, Comey held a news conference, announcing that the FBI was recommending no charges to be filed against Clinton. Although he called her actions “extremely careless,” he said the FBI concluded there was no evidence that she had any real intention to engage in criminal activity, or to violate laws.
On October 28, 11 days before the presidential election, Comey suddenly caused a new wave of shock, this time in the Democrats, evoking the existence of 650,000 new messages potentially relevant in the investigation. He announced that the FBI was investigating about 650,000 emails, which had been restored from a laptop owned by Anthony Weiner, a former US Congressman who was married to Clinton’s top aide, Huma Abedin, until her divorce at the end of August. Comey said that he just thought we would all want to know – and after all, he had promised to avail us of any new outcomes in the investigation.
Then again, another shock, two days before the election, FBI director James Comey announced that those recently discovered emails had not altered his determination that the Democrat candidate should not be charged for her careless use of a private email address and server as a Secretary of State.
That final made-you-look announcement came just days before the election, and with that much, the FBI that had cleared Hillary Clinton from further investigation in her email case, and Clinton and her Republican party rival, Donald Trump, went about making their last-ditch efforts at digging themselves out of the holes they were each in – both had problems to surmount – but Clinton clearly thought she was coasting in for the win.
Looking back on it now, it seems a little strange how Hillary had bought those fireworks for the big election victory celebration, and then decided to call them off. She had no doubt begun imagining how she would have the Oval Office re-decorated, had already begun practicing her salute, and had probably spent several hours in reverie imagining what it would be like to hear Hail to the Chief play as she walked into the room. And then at the last moment, something deep inside reminded her that she should not count the eggs before they hatched – bad form.
To this day, and every day since the election, the entire liberal army is distraught and inconsolably angry as they face the humiliation of losing their chances of winning the U.S. presidency anew, every day, like some Groundhog Day nightmare.
Clinton had remained supreme in the polls over Trump throughout most of the campaign, except for that last week when she lost ground to Trump, and in some polls she even dragged behind him. However, in the last few days their chances had stabilized again in the opinion polls.
Before the election, in a Sunday evening performance in Sterling Heights, Michigan, Trump made it clear that he still held Clinton up as guilty and that the FBI would not allow her to get away with her terrible crimes.
In fact, that night Trump had claimed that Hillary was being protected by a rigged system. He then went on to assert that he might not be able to accept the results of the presidential election on November 8, adding that “you cannot check 650,000 emails in eight days. You cannot do it people.” So, at that point Trump had vacillated, as had everyone, and the whole country was in the throes of a love-hate relationship with Comey.
And the result? Ironically, Trump won the election in an electoral college landslide, and next thing, the Department of Justice was investigating allegations involving the role of the FBI during the election. On top of that, the relations between the White House and the FBI became all the more strained as the FBI is currently investigating the relations maintained by several relatives of Donald Trump with Russian officials.
Fast forward to this week: Trump and Comey are now best friends. Now Trump is in, he and Comey have established a cozy relationship full of mutual respect, and Comey is staying as FBI Director for good. To top it all off, Trump tells everyone that Comey is becoming more famous than he is.
That means Trump likes Comey – he really likes him.
Actually, there could be a little bit more to it than that: Comey and Trump are a team now, so they might be laying in wait for the right time to witness the new Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, as he names a Special Prosecutor, to pursue the execution of the Hillary Clinton case. And who might that Special Prosecutor be? It might be none other than one Chris Christie.