F.B.I. Director James Comey Is Fired by Trump

F.B.I. Director James Comey Is Fired by Trump

F.B.I. Director James Comey Is Fired by Trump

WASHINGTON (AP) – President Trump dismissed International Boxing Federation (IRB) director James B. Comey on Tuesday, abruptly ending the top official who conducted a criminal investigation into whether Mr. Trump’s advisers had arranged with the Russian government To direct the outcome of the 2016 presidential elections.

The astounding development of Trump’s presidency raised the specter of political interference from an incumbent president in an investigation by the nation’s leading law enforcement agency. Immediately ignited Democratic calls for a special council to direct the investigation of Russia.

Mr. Trump explained the dismissal citing Mr. Comey’s handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server, although it was widely seen that the president had benefited politically from that investigation And once praised Mr. Comey for his “” In his search for Mrs. Clinton during the campaign.

But in his letter to Mr. Comey, delivered to reporters by the White House, the president betrayed his focus on continuing research on Russia and its aides.

“Although I greatly appreciate being informed, on three separate occasions, that I am not under investigation, I agree with the DOJ ruling that you can not effectively run the office,” Trump said in a statement. Letter to Mr. Comey dated Tuesday. White House officials declined to say anything more about the three occasions cited by Mr. Trump.

F.B.I. Director James Comey Is Fired by Trump

Officials said Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein pressed for the dismissal of Mr. Comey. But many in Washington, including veteran F.B.I. Officials, saw an effort carefully choreographed by the president to create a pretense for a fall of President F.B.I. tormentor.

“I can not defend the director’s handling of the conclusion of Secretary Clinton’s e-mail inquiry,” Rosenstein wrote in another letter that was published by the White House, “and I do not understand your refusal to accept the quasi-universal judgment of That he was wrong. ”

The reaction in Washington was swift and fierce. Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, the Democrat leader, said the layoff could make Americans suspect a cover-up. Mr. Trump returned Tuesday night in a Twitter post: “Cryin ‘Chuck Schumer recently stated:” I no longer have confidence in him (James Comey). “Then he is so indignant.”

Many Republicans attacked the president for making a rash decision that could have profound implications for his party. Rep. Justin Amash, Michigan Republican, said on Twitter that he now supports an independent commission to investigate Russia’s ties to Mr. Trump. He called Mr. Trump’s statement that Mr. Comey had clarified it three times “strange.”

“I’ve spent the last few hours trying to find an acceptable justification for Comey’s farewell moment,” said Senator Jeff Flake, Arizona Republican, on Twitter. “I just can not do it.”

In a sign of the intense interest of the FBI by Mr. Trump’s advisers, a grand jury in Virginia issued subpoenas in recent weeks for records relating to former White House national security adviser Michael T. Flynn, according to a US official familiar with the case. Flynn is under investigation for his financial ties with Russia and Turkey. Grand jury subpoenas are a routine part of federal investigations and are not a sign that charges are imminent. It was not clear that the subpoenas, which were first reported , were related to Mr. Comey’s dismissal.

The dismissal ended the long and deteriorating relationship between Mr. Trump and Mr. Comey, who repeatedly clashed publicly and privately. For Mr. Trump, a president who puts a premium on loyalty, Mr. Comey represented an independent and unpredictable director with enormous power to disrupt his administration.

Mr. Comey learned from the news reports that he had been fired while addressing office employees in Los Angeles. As Mr. Comey spoke, the television screens in the background began to blink the news. In response to the reports, Mr. Comey laughed, saying that he thought it was a rather amusing joke. Shortly thereafter, Mr. Trump’s letter was delivered to F.B.I. Headquarters in Washington.

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