- US President Donald Trump called former FBI director James Comey a “political hack,” a liar, and a “leaker” on Saturday morning.
- Shortly after, Comey tweeted out two quotes about truth, lies, and justice.
- Trump fired Comey in May, while Comey was spearheading the FBI’s investigation into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to tilt the 2016 election in his favour.
Former FBI director James Comey tweeted out two quotes about truth and justice after President Donald Trump attacked him Saturday morning and again cast doubt on the intelligence community’s assessment that Russia interfered in the 2016 election.
Trump said he believed Russian President Vladimir Putin when he said he did not order Russia’s election meddling. Trump also lashed out at Comey, along with former CIA director John Brennan and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, calling them “political hacks.” All the men have consistently emphasised that Russia mounted an elaborate campaign to undermine the election and to propel Trump to victory.
“I mean, give me a break, they are political hacks,” Trump said of the three former intelligence officials. “So you look at it, I mean, you have Brennan, you have Clapper, and you have Comey. Comey is proven now to be a liar and he is proven now to be a leaker. So you look at that and you have President Putin very strongly, vehemently says he had nothing to do with them.”
Comey took to Twitter shortly after Trump’s remarks.
“‘If you want truth to go round the world you must hire an express train to pul it; but if you want a lie to go round the world, it will fly; it is light as a feather and a breath will carry it,'” Comey tweeted after the president criticised him, quoting an 1855 sermon from the Rev. Charles Haddon Spurgeon.
The tweet included a photo of the Great Falls of the Potomac, and Comey said in a follow-up tweet that he liked it because it reminded him of his favourite scripture verse, from Amos. “‘But let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream,'” Comey quoted in his tweet.
Trump has long
expressed doubt about the intelligence community’s findings on Russia’s election interference, particularly as it relates to the Kremlin’s effort to help his campaign and hurt that of his opponent and the former Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton.
Though he praised Comey after he revealed eleven days before the election that the FBI was reopening its investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server, Trump later soured on the FBI director, particularly after he confirmed in March that the FBI was investigating whether the Trump campaign colluded with Moscow in 2016.
Trump ultimately fired Comey in May. The the White House initially said Comey was fired because of the way he handled the bureau’s investigation of Clinton’s emails, Trump later told NBC’s Lester Holt that “this Russia thing” had been a factor in his decision.
Trump also reportedly called Comey a “nut job” whose firing had taken “great pressure” off of him during an Oval Office meeting with two senior Russian officials that took place one day after Comey’s dismissal.
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein appointed former FBI director Robert Mueller as special counsel in charge of the bureau’s Russia investigation shortly after Trump fired Comey. As part of his investigation, Mueller is said to be building an obstruction-of-justice case against Trump relating to his decision to fire Comey.
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