- President Donald Trump approved Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s opening monologue that criticised the FBI.
- Trump said former FBI director James Comey’s “leadership was a disaster.”
President Donald Trump approved Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s show on Thursday, in which Carlson delivered a scathing assessment of the FBI. Carlson, in his opening monologue, suggested the FBI “failed to stop” a series of deadly attacks in the US.
“The @TuckerCarlson opening statement about our once cherished and great FBI was so sad to watch,” Trump tweeted. “James Comey’s leadership was a disaster!”
Carlson listed mass murderers who were surveilled by the FBI, which included Pulse nightclub shooter Omar Mateen and the recent New York attacker Sayfullo Habibullaevic Saipov.
“The more likely and in fact the far more terrifying explanation is incompetence,” Carlson said, referring to the Las Vegas shooting that killed 59 people. “The people running this case don’t really know what they’re doing.”
“You hate to conclude something like that, but it’s becoming hard not to,” he continued. “We have a right to be worried about the FBI.”
Former FBI director James Comey, who was fired by Trump in May, has been a source of ire for Trump and the White House. Critics have accused Trump of unduly interfering with the Justice Department, particularly after reports emerged of a meeting where Trump allegedly asked Comey for his “loyalty” and to drop the investigation into former national security adviser Mike Flynn.
Trump has since railed against Comey and the FBI, accusing the bureau of leaking sensitive information to the media.
“James Comey will be replaced by someone who will do a far better job, bringing back the spirit and prestige of the FBI,” Trump tweeted, shortly after Comey’s firing.
“James Comey leaked CLASSIFIED INFORMATION to the media,” Trump tweeted in July. “That is so illegal!”
Despite Trump’s claims of a declining FBI, Benjamin Wittes, Lawfare’s editor-in-chief and a personal friend of Comey’s, replied to his tweet with a different assessment of the former director.
“Recently an FBI agent gave me a letter to give to Jim to thank him,” Wittes tweeted. “Jim has boxes of such letters from FBI staff who know this is bull.”
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