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President Trump Fires F.B.I. Director James Comey

FBI Director James Comey

In a surprising late-day announcement, President Trump has fired James Comey, the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, who has been at the center of controversies involving the 2016 Presidential election, including an ongoing investigation involving Russian interference in the election an  the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia:

FBI Director James B. Comey has been dismissed by the president, according to White House spokesman Sean Spicer – a startling move that officials said stemmed from a conclusion by Justice Department officials that he had mishandled the probe of Hillary Clinton’s emails.

“The president has accepted the recommendation of the Attorney General and the deputy Attorney General regarding the dismissal of the director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation,” Spicer told reporters in the briefing room.

Spicer also said that Comey was “notified a short time ago.” This is effective “immediately,” he said.

Officials said Comey was fired because senior Justice Department officials concluded he had violated Justice Department principles and procedures by publicly discussing the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s use of private email. Just last week, President Trump publicly accused Comey of giving Clinton “a free pass for many bad deeds” when he decided not to recommend criminal charges in the case.

Officials released a Tuesday memo from the Deputy Attorney General, Rod Rosenstein, laying out the rationale behind Comey’s dismissal.

“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.”

In a letter to Trump, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said that he agreed.

“I have concluded that a fresh start is needed at the leadership of the FBI,” Sessions wrote. “I must recommend that you remove Director James B. Comey, Jr. and identify an experienced and qualified individual to lead the great men and women of the FBI.”

More from The New York Times:

WASHINGTON — President Trump has fired the director of the F.B.I., James B. Comey, over his handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails, the White House said on Tuesday.

Mr. Comey was leading an investigation into whether members of the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to influence the 2016 election.

“While I greatly appreciate you informing me, on three separate occasions, that I am not under investigation, I nevertheless concur with the judgment of the Department of Justice that you are not able to effectively lead the bureau,” Mr. Trump said in a letter to Mr. Comey dated Tuesday.

“It is essential that we find new leadership for the F.B.I. that restores public trust and confidence in its vital law enforcement mission,” Mr. Trump wrote.

Officials at the F.B.I. said they were not immediately aware of Mr. Comey’s dismissal, which Mr. Trump described as effective immediately.

In a separate letter released at the White House, Mr. Spicer said that the president informed the director that he has been “terminated and removed from office.”

Memos released by the White House show that Rod J. Rosenstein, the newly sworn-in deputy attorney general, that recommended Mr. Comey be fired over how he disclosed the investigation into Mrs. Clinton.

Mr. Comey broke with longstanding tradition and policies by discussing the case and chastising the Democratic presidential nominee’s “careless” handling of classified information. Then, in the campaign’s final days, Mr. Comey announced that the F.B.I. was reopening the case, a move that earned him widespread criticism.

“The F.B.I. is one of our nation’s most cherished and respected institutions and today will mark a new beginning for our crown jewel of law enforcement,” Mr. Trump said in the statement.

The announcement came at the end of a day in which it was revealed that Comey had testified incorrectly last week before the Senate Judiciary Committee regarding the reopening of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server. In that testimony, Comey had turned out Clinton’s personal aide Huma Abedin had been engaging in a regular practice of sending email from the server to her husband Anthony Weiner for him to print out for Clinton’s use. Today’s revelations indicated that this was inaccurate in that Abedin had only forwarded only a small amount of those emails to Weiner and that most of them had ended up on the laptop due to automatic backups of Abedin’s phone to the laptop, which was apparently jointly used by her and her estranged husband during the time they were still living together. Less than an hour before the White House released the letter from Trump firing Comey, the Bureau had released a letter addressed to the committee seeking to clarify Comey’s testimony regarding this aspect of the Clinton investigation. It was also during this testimony that Comey confirmed that there is an ongoing investigation into both the efforts by the Russian government to interfere in the Presidential election and the allegations regarding contacts between the Trump campaign and Russian government officials and others in Russia with ties to the Russian government and Vladimir Putin.

This decision is already being compared to the infamous Saturday Night Massacre that occurred during the Watergate investigation during which President Nixon fired both his Attorney General and Deputy Attorney General over their refusal to fire Watergate Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox, and it’s certainly easy to understand why people might make that comparison. Notwithstanding the fact that the memorandum from Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein focused largely on Comey’s actions in July of last year when he held a press conference to announce the results of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server, the fact that this is occurring less than a week after Comey confirmed in public that the Bureau was investigating Trump associates regarding their ties with Russia is certainly sufficient to raise doubts about the legitimacy of this decision. This is especially true given the fact that Trump ended up praising Comey’s decision in October of last year to release a letter he sent to Congress supplementing his testimony to reveal that the Bureau was reopening the investigation due to the discovery of additional email on the Weiner/Abedin laptop that were connected to Clinton’s private server. Given that, the suspicion that Comey was fired because of the investigation of Trump associates is not at all without merit. Whether there is any merit to that suspicion is something that only time will tell.

In any case, this is a fast-developing story and there will be further developments and reactions throughout the night and into tomorrow. Some Democrats in the Senate have already issued statements calling for an investigation into the circumstances behind Comey’s firing and the question of the status of the investigation into the Trump-Russia connections. At its best, it is a suspicious move by a President whose campaign is under investigation. At its worst, it’s just the latest development into a sordid tale that could become the biggest problem a President has faced since Iran-Contra, or worse. As things stand, though, suspicion of the motives behind this decision certainly seem to be warranted.

Here are the copies of the White House Statement on the firing of Director Comey, including the letter from the President to Comey, a letter from the Attorney General, and the aforementioned Memorandum from the Deputy Attorney General:

White House Fires James Comey by Doug Mataconis on Scribd

Related Posts:

About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. michael reynolds says:

    Everyone who investigates Trump he fires: Preet Bharara, Sally Yates and now Comey. That is 3 for 3.

    There is no mystery here. Trump is dirty. Trump is a criminal. Trump takes laundered Russian money and lies about it. Trump is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Vladimir Putin.

    And Republicans will do everything they can to cover up his crimes because treason is not half as important to them as angering liberals.

    We are in a very bad place as a country.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 76 Thumb down 5

  2. pylon says:

    @michael reynolds:

    And anyone who drops an investigation gets money for their election PAC (Bondi).

    This is third world dictator stuff.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 39 Thumb down 3

  3. Todd says:

    This has to be the beginning of the end of the Trump Presidency. The only logical conclusion to draw from this firing is that the FBI was on the verge of some sort of very significant action.

    I’m almost glad I work the early shift tomorrow (where I’ll be by myself in the building for the first few hours). Morning Joe should be a real hoot to watch.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 27 Thumb down 2

  4. Liberal Capitalist says:

    Thanks for the gumballs, Mickey…

    Now GTFO.

    I mean… wow!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  5. MikeSJ says:

    What amazes me about Trump is the same thing that amazed me about Sandusky, the Penn State child molester.

    It wasn’t the fact that he was a pedophile that shocked me but the fact that numerous people in positions of authority KNEW he was raping children and actively covered it up.

    I did not expect that. I – naively it seems – thought people had more innate decency in them than to collude with someone as vile as Sandusky.

    Back to Trump.

    There’s obviously something nefarious going on with him. My bet is he’s tied into serious money shenanigans with Russia. Like Sandusky situation, the absolute abdication of responsibility I am seeing by the Republicans is truly shameful.

    My only hope is the Democrats (my party) can finally get off their asses and VOTE. If this doesn’t motivate the lazy & the Purity Ponies I don’t know what will.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 35 Thumb down 2

  6. Mikey says:

    They have to be popping champagne corks in the Kremlin right now.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  7. gVOR08 says:

    the fact that this is occurring less than a week after Comey confirmed in public that the Bureau was investigating Trump associates regarding their ties with Russia is certainly sufficient to raise doubts about the legitimacy of this decision.

    Doug Mataconis, master of understatement, strikes again.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 32 Thumb down 0

  8. Mikey says:

    the memorandum from Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein focused largely on Comey’s actions in July of last year when he held a press conference to announce the results of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server

    You’d think they’d be smarter than to go with such a transparently lame pretext, but wow, here we are.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 1

  9. Hal_10000 says:

    I agree that the firing is suspicious but … people were calling for Comey’s ouster just like hours ago. And the reasons listed — his press conference on Clinton’s charges, his release of the letter, etc. — are exactly the kind of things Democrats have been complaining about. So which is it? Should he be fired or not fired? Is he a hero or a villain? I’m getting dizzy here.

    I do agree with what Ron Wyden said: the next step is to bring back Comey to Congress to tell them everything he knows about the Russia investigation.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 21 Thumb down 23

  10. Mikey says:

    Justin Amash‏ Verified account @justinamash 6 minutes ago

    My staff and I are reviewing legislation to establish an independent commission on Russia. The second paragraph of this letter is bizarre.

    https://twitter.com/justinamash/status/862089192603607041

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  11. michael reynolds says:

    @Hal_10000:

    This has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with anything but quashing the Russia investigation. You have to be an absolute cretin to buy Trump’s bullshit explanation.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 38 Thumb down 6

  12. Kylopod says:

    @Todd: “This has to be the beginning of the end of Trump” is a phrase that, in one variation or another, I have heard practically ad nauseum over the past two years. Forgive me for having blunted expectations by now.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 0

  13. Todd says:

    @Kylopod: If this isn’t the beginning of the end of the Trump Presidency, and/or the GOP that enables him, to some extent it will simply confirm how inept and feckless the Democrats/Left are when it comes to politics in this country.

    So yes, to some extent I do sadly share your blunted expectations. :-/

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2

  14. Barry says:

    @Mikey: “You’d think they’d be smarter than to go with such a transparently lame pretext, but wow, here we are.”

    Why? The Base needs no excuses, and the ‘liberal media’ needs only a teeny tiny fig leaf.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  15. CSK says:

    Lindsey Graham also called for an inquiry into Trump’s business ties with Russia, I believe a few hours before the Comey firing was made public.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0

  16. Argon says:

    Three words: Holy fucking shit!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  17. Gustopher says:

    Trump’s statement should have ended with “PS: I am not a crook.”

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 26 Thumb down 0

  18. Hal_10000 says:

    @michael reynolds:

    It probably does. But the conspiracy theories continue to fly thick regardless:

    Everyone who investigates Trump he fires: Preet Bharara, Sally Yates and now Comey. That is 3 for 3.

    AFAICT, Bharara wasn’t investigating Trump. Nor was Yates. Bharara was fired for refusing to tender a standard USA resignation. Yates was fired for refusing to defend an EO on policy not constitutional grounds.

    I’m not saying there’s no there there. I’m just pointing out that everything Trump does or says is interpreted as a sign that the Russia scandal is about to blow up and this is the beginning of the end of his presidency. This is a significant development. But the idea that Trump is investing a lot of thought into these things is ridiculous. He doesn’t invest a lot of thought in anything.

    At this point, I still am at the position I have had from day one: Trump didn’t conspire with Putin; but he’s probably a “useful idiot” Putin is using for his purposes. There may be people within his Admin who did conspire — Manafort, Flynn, etc. This is why we need an independent Congressional investigation.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 13 Thumb down 8

  19. Kylopod says:

    @Todd:

    to some extent it will simply confirm how inept and feckless the Democrats/Left are when it comes to politics in this country.

    I have my qualms about Dems and the left, but at present–and until Nov. 2018 at minimum–both are a non-factor.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 0

  20. Neil Hudelson says:

    This is going to make his testimony on Thursday very, very interesting.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  21. michael reynolds says:

    Yates was fired for refusing to defend an EO on policy not constitutional grounds.

    Please tell me that was you reporting what some believe, not what you believe.

    Of course Trump is directly involved. If you doubt it then honestly you just have not been following the state of play. Trump is clearly guilty. Clearly.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 4

  22. michael reynolds says:

    @Hal_10000:
    And by the way, Bharara was investigating various things at Trump Tower.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 27 Thumb down 3

  23. Yank says:

    It wasn’t the fact that he was a pedophile that shocked me but the fact that numerous people in positions of authority KNEW he was raping children and actively covered it up.

    The RNC was hacked as well as the DNC, but their emails weren’t leaked. We may have to start to believe that the entire party is compromised.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 0

  24. Hal_10000 says:

    @michael reynolds:

    She was literally fired the day she refused to defend Trump’s EO. This isn’t really in dispute, is it? Her connection to Russia is that she warned Trump Flynn was compromised, well before her firing.

    What specific investigations was Bharara in charge of? I can’t find anything. Trump Tower was in his jurisdiction but I can’t find a specific investigation.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

  25. Mikey says:

    Great analysis by Ben Wittes and Susan Hennessey over at Lawfare.

    Getting rid of Comey removes the guy who is running the Russia investigation. It removes the guy who can look Congress in the eye and say credibly that the FBI is investigating whether anyone in the Trump orbit was actively working with the Russians. It removes the guy who, in February, reportedly refused the White House’s request to publicly knock down stories about Trump and Russia while congressmen in key positions of investigatory responsibility allegedly complied. It removes the one person of stature (figurative as well as literal) in the government whom everyone knows will–even when he’s wrong–do what he thinks is the right thing and damn the torpedos. It removes, in other words, the essential person for a credible investigation.

    It’s a neat trick: stymie the Russia investigation by siding with Hillary Clinton. Put another way, what if you had a Saturday Night Massacre and liberals cheered because they hated Archibald Cox?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 0

  26. Hal_10000 says:

    One thing I want to see is who Trump nominates as Comey’s replacement. That will tell us a LOT. If it’s another Trump crony, there should be fierce opposition.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  27. Todd says:

    @Kylopod:

    I have my qualms about Dems and the left, but at present–and until Nov. 2018 at minimum–both are a non-factor.

    I somewhat agree. The extent to which Trump will or will not face consequences for this decision is largely controlled by the reaction of Republicans. But the political calculations Republicans make will have a lot to do with their determination of how likely they are to be held electorally responsible should they decided to do as little as possible … and that will be about the ineptness of the left.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  28. CSK says:

    Well, the Senate Intelligence Committee has asked the Treasury Dept.’s financial crimes unit to hand over any info they have on Trump and his top aides.

    Financial. Crimes. Unit.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 0

  29. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @Mikey: Yeah, but the Trumpeters truly believe that there was a smoking gun in the Hillary investigation that Comey spiked, and the message was to them, not to people like you and me. (See: “I do not understand his refusal to accept the nearly universal judgment that he was mistaken.”)

    I’m just glad to see that he got the reward of hapless toadies and sellouts everywhere. (But then again, I’m not a particularly nice person.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  30. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @Kylopod: I feel your pain. This has the makings of being able to become a Democratic version of 11!!11BENGHAAAAAAAAZZZZZZIIIII…!!!!11!!!!!11!!!!!11!!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  31. CSK says:

    @Hal_10000:

    Well, he’s not going to nominate Chris Christie, because Jared Kushner hates Christie’s guts for throwing his father into the slammer.

    Giuliani?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  32. Hal_10000 says:

    BTW: Here’s Wyden’s statement. I agree entirely. Comey testifies. Investigation goes on. IF this is Trump trying to cover up, that’s all the more reason to push forward.

    Remember something about the Saturday Night Massacre — assuming the comparison is legit: it backfired badly. Trump has just made a similar mistake.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 0

  33. Todd says:

    I can’t imagine that Trump will have an easy time getting any replacement FBI director confirmed by the Senate. So in the short term, it will be interesting to see if he also decides to fire Deputy Director McCabe, whose ties to Clinton allies are already being questioned by right-wing media.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  34. Nikki says:

    @Mikey:

    Put another way, what if you had a Saturday Night Massacre and liberals cheered because they hated Archibald Cox?

    Liberals aren’t cheering this. Yes, we may hate what Comey did, but we KNOW we prefer Comey’s brand of evil to Trump’s.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 20 Thumb down 0

  35. Franklin says:

    Trump’s done a lot of nasty stuff. This one, however, signals to me more than anything that we are probably living under the most crooked POTUS ever.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 0

  36. michael reynolds says:

    @Hal_10000:

    1) Yates was fired the Monday after she told the WH about Flynn.

    2) Bharara was investigating corrupt Congressman and current Trump Cabinet member, Tom Price. He was also investigating Fox News. And he was rumored to be looking into Manafort’s real estate deals in NYC, which are, not surprisingly, just money-laundering fronts.

    3) The events Trump cites as excuse for firing Comey happened six months ago, and Trump never evinced the slightest problem with them, in fact he reveled in them. Loudly. Publicly. So Trump rushed out a firing without having even considered a replacement for events that he praised and profited from? Right.

    This doesn’t pass the laugh test.

    Some random bullet points for you, there are plenty more:

    – Trump casino was fined 10 million for repeatedly refusing to follow anti-money laundering law.

    – Trump’s two idiot sons admitted that Trump no longer relied on banks, but on Russian money. Who has money to lend in Russia, Hal?

    – Flynn, Manafort, Page, Kushner, Stone and Sessions all were caught lying about contacts with the Russians. Always, always, the Russians.The ones who everyone BUT Trump admits interfered in our election. One. . . no, six. . . coincidences.

    – Far from being discredited, verifiable information continues to support the famous, ‘dossier.’

    – Manafort had his Cyprus bank accounts investigated and before the investigation could proceed, he shut everything down and pulled out.

    – Flynn was outed by Sally Yates, who 3 days later was fired.

    – Meanwhile Flynn had no limits on his access to secrets, and was not fired. He was not fired until the Washington Post outed him. He sat in on calls with Putin after Yates had come in with her hair on fire about him being compromised. Why?

    – And again and again, Trump’s attempts at diverting us from this story have turned out to be pure bullshit. See: Susan Rice. See: Obama’s ‘wires.’

    Then, there are the things not done. The things Trump would do if he were actually innocent:

    – Release his tax returns
    – Open his corporate books to independent auditors.
    – Start an investigation into Russian hacking as he said he would, and did not.
    – Tell the GOP Congress to stop playing games with the investigations.
    – Declassify Flynn’s ‘underlying behavior.’
    – Stop slandering his own employees involved in these investigations.
    – Stop attacking the media for reporting the truth.
    – Call for an independent prosecutor to find anyone who was guilty.

    Absolutely everything Trump has done, and everything he has not done, points to his guilt. If he was a black man we’d find him guilty of murder on half this much circumstantial evidence.

    Now, can I prove in a court of law that Trump floats his ’empire’ on laundered Russian money? No. But the FBI was on that very trail. . . when Trump fired Comey. For something he did months ago. That Trump profited from. And loudly praised. And was in such a bust-ass hurry after 6 months that he couldn’t even think about a replacement. Sure.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 47 Thumb down 3

  37. michael reynolds says:

    @Todd:
    My money is on Chris Christie. Because Trump is just that dumb, and Christie is just that desperate.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 2

  38. Scott says:

    I’m old enough to remember Watergate and watched the hearings. As this goes on, I wonder if there will be a Howard Baker among the Republicans. I don’t see it. And I’ll wait for the next Mark Felt. More likely.

    Been watching CNN. Jeffrey Toobin is on a tear. And I’ve never seen Gregory so riled up. Anderson just barely restrains himself jumping through the camera at Kelly Anne.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  39. Scott says:

    And notice that Trump had neither the courage nor courtesy to call Comey and fire him to his face. Comey was in CA and found out through the television.

    Once more: Trump is a classless pig and always will be.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 32 Thumb down 1

  40. Slugger says:

    Country or party? Everything has a price.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  41. CSK says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Forget Christie. As I said, Kushner hates Christie’s guts. He won’t allow this.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  42. Jack says:

    @michael reynolds: Tonight on Coast to Coast AM–Michael Reynolds

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 14

  43. Hal_10000 says:

    This is *very* preliminary, but CNN is indicating that the Grand Jury issued subpoenas for Flynn today.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  44. MBunge says:

    @michael reynolds:

    To sum it all up, “the Russians” has become to small-handed Trump haters what “the whitey tape” was to racist Obama haters.

    Mike

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 34

  45. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @Jack:
    You have been screaming about Benghazi for years based on a fvck-wad less.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2

  46. Jack says:

    @Daryl’s other brother Darryl: I’ve neither been screaming nor for years.

    By the way, are you still rolling your wife in flour and looking for the wet spot?

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 29

  47. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @MBunge:
    Um…the whitey tape had absolutely no basis in fact.
    Everything MR listed has actually happened.
    See the difference? No, you probably can’t.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 29 Thumb down 1

  48. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @Jack:
    Sure you have… and about Clinton emails…and who knows what other nothing-burgers.
    Whatever the people who tell you what to think told you to scream about.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 2

  49. Jack says:

    @Daryl’s other brother Darryl: Yes, CNN just told me to scream about Hillary molesting children and Michelle Obama being a tranny.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 18

  50. Mr. Bluster says:
  51. Mr. Bluster says:

    Jack is waiting for President Pud to call him to be Comey’s replacement.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  52. Mikey says:

    @MBunge: Wow, Bungle, that’s a level of Trumpist sycophancy surprising even for you.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 0

  53. michael reynolds says:

    @MBunge:

    I am genuinely sorry to see you sink this low. You’ve joined the cult.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 28 Thumb down 1

  54. An Interested Party says:

    To sum it all up, “the Russians” has become to small-handed Trump haters what “the whitey tape” was to racist Obama haters.

    Oh please…you pathetic lickspittle…to equate this to “the whitey tape” paints you as a prime Trump fluffer…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  55. michael reynolds says:

    @Hal_10000:

    For business records. Someone is following the money.

    And there’s a report of FinCEN getting into it with the Intel committees.

    People are missing the point. This is not just Putin helps Trump, this is Putin owns Trump. This is about money and its laundering. That’s my prediction.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 1

  56. Scott says:

    @Scott: I want to expand on my own comment. Any normal boss would wait until Comey was back in town, call him into his office, and tell him he’s fired. That this didn’t happen, tells us what we already know about Trump. He’s a coward and a bully.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 22 Thumb down 0

  57. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    This can go only two ways:
    ~A special prosecutor is appointed.
    ~Republicans in Congress continue to carry Don the Cons water and don’t appoint.
    Either way, an already illegitimate, incompetent Presidency is further weakened.
    If Republicans in Congress don’t step up then they will be shown to be even more feckless than they already appeared.
    Which is good for the Republic.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

  58. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @michael reynolds:
    I wouldn’t be surprised if all these guys, Stone Page Manafort Flynn, were free-lancing in order to install a buffoon in office that they could control.
    I’m beginning to think the Comb-Over isn’t smart enough to be behind this stuff…as stupid as it is.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  59. Jack says:

    Michael Reynolds or Donald Trump

    One is a psychopath who believes his raving rants. The other is President of the United States of America.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 31

  60. Mr. Bluster says:

    Jack you’re so clever. But we all know what your last name is.
    I’ll even use it in a sentence.

    Listen up class. This question will test your mettle.
    If he were stranded on the roof, would you help your uncle Jack off?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  61. Guarneri says:

    You know, I read today that a 30 year veteran, Obama appointed, approved by the Senate 94-6 Deputy Attorney General wrote a letter to his boss, passed on to the President, recommending that the FBI director be fired. An FBI director not trusted by either party. And it happened.

    Then I come here and all I see is a bunch of foaming at the mouth conjecture about Russians and Trump, despite testimony just yesterday by Clapper and Yates.

    If I didn’t know any better I’d think this is just a bunch of bitter – 6 months now – and desperate witch hunting opportunity by crazed partisans. If I didn’t know better…….(snicker)

    Have fun with your group choke the chicken-fest.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 24

  62. michael reynolds says:

    @Guarneri:
    Thanks for telling us what Breitbart says.

    Does it leave a bad taste when you regurgitate like that?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 26 Thumb down 5

  63. Joe says:

    The point has been made several times that the “reason” for the firing is well over 6 months old. Does it bother anybody else that Rosenstein’s memo, Session’s recommendation and Trump’s letter all bear today’s date? Is this really how long it takes to consider firing the Director of the FBI?

    And how does Rosenstein’s memo come out to Sessions and Trump just today? Every piece of this analysis was available the day Trump was inaugurated, or elected or sooner. The only “news” was that Comey reaffirmed his actions in his testimony. If that was really the trigger, then Rosenstein would have had the memo in his top drawer just waiting to see if Comey apologized to Congress and recognized the error of his ways. If such an apology would not have been good enough, Comey would have been gone no later than January 21. If the failure to apologize was the trigger, he should have been gone the day after his testimony.

    And who writes a memo based on media-reported opinions of prior officials? Surely there are internal policies to cite or even prosecutorial guidelines. This is clearly a hit piece, commissioned by the White House and/or the AG. It looks ridiculous on its face.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 0

  64. Jack says:

    @Mr. Bluster: Your ball washing is oh so cute. Maybe after Michael takes his cock out of your mouth holster, you can come up with something original.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 18

  65. M.un.ch.bo.x says:

    @asshat: Drain the swamp :MAGA

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 14

  66. michael reynolds says:

    @Jack:
    I savor your flop sweat. Your white overlord is going down. So sad. Waaah.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 1

  67. Jack says:

    @michael reynolds: blah, blah, blah. More drivel from a liberal coward so incensed that a republican beat out Hillary “twatwhistle” Clinton that he simply cannot sleep at night. There is a safe space for you Michael, it’s a rubber room and they will take you, all you have to do is ask.

    The first step is just admitting you have a problem.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 19

  68. Slugger says:

    We, the citizens of this country, need to make sure that all public officials work for us and ensure that the next FBI director is a law officer of unimpeccable character and energy to pursue serious criminals. We can not accept a political hack. The foremost law enforcement agency in our country must be devoted to justice and can not be allowed to turn into a political weathervane.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  69. Yank says:

    The point has been made several times that the “reason” for the firing is well over 6 months old. Does it bother anybody else that Rosenstein’s memo, Session’s recommendation and Trump’s letter all bear today’s date? Is this really how long it takes to consider firing the Director of the FBI?

    No Trump fan can actually defend this point, because it makes zero sense. Trump could have fired Comey the minute he took office since we all knew back then that he mishandled the Clinton investigation.

    On top of that Trump was raising Comey for his handling of Clinton and now suddenly not a fan.

    This is so transparent what is going on here and the fact that any Trump fan has the balls to try to spin this is admirable.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 0

  70. Modulo Myself says:

    @Guarneri:

    He was appointed by Bush, you silly numbskull.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  71. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    Russia attacked us.
    Jack and Guarneri and Bunge don’t give a fuck because they are enthralled with a buffoon in a fake orange tan.
    Sad!!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  72. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    Russia attacked us.
    Jack and Guarneri and Bunge don’t give a fwck because they are enthralled with a buffoon in a fake orange tan.
    Sad!!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  73. al-Ameda says:

    @MBunge:

    To sum it all up, “the Russians” has become to small-handed Trump haters what “the whitey tape” was to racist Obama haters.
    Mike

    I’m sorry for your loss. Get well soon.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  74. al-Ameda says:

    @M.un.ch.bo.x:

    @asshat: Drain the swamp :MAGA

    So, you favor the impeachment and conviction of Donald Trump?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  75. Modulo Myself says:

    In general, I see Trump trying to make Russia a Clinton/Comey conspiracy. I was in a bodega tonight where Hannity was for some reason playing, and he was going on about how Comey saved Clinton and the Clinton Foundation. Don’t be surprised when the remedial moderates and conservatives all suddenly start getting curious about how this grand jury is a Clinton operation. Trump has been able to set up duplicate BS-filled operations whenever challenged. Did he lose the popular vote or did 3 million vote for Clinton illegally? Was his campaign tied up with Russian intelligence or was Obama spying on him illegally? He gets no pushback and responsible moderates stroke their chins and say what if. So don’t be surprised if this goes as far as the GOP losing control of the House in 2018 vs. massive illegal voting hands corrupt Democrats Congress. Or an indictment by a grand jury against Michael Flynn vs a Clinton-backed coup to overturn an election.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  76. Fredw says:

    It was interesting that Trump stressed that Comey told him 3 times that he was not being investigated over Russia. It reminds me of something that happened to me in the sixties. My friend Denis and I went tot the drive-in to see the Ursala Andress movie “She” in his little MG Midget. When He handed the cashier the money Denis said, “We are not gay, we just want to see the movie”. I said “why did you say that, the guy would not have thought anything about it if you did not say that, now he thinks we’re gay”.

    It turns out , I found out about 10 years later that Denis was gay!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  77. Mr. Bluster says:

    @Jack:..Never met the man.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  78. teve tory says:

    One reason Le Pen failed is that the french conservatives couldn’t stomach her. Our conservatives have fewer scruples.

    I don’t think Trump will become a malevolent dictator, because he’s too lazy and ADHD, but every thinking person should take note of how many willing idiots support whatever he does. It could happen here. Easily.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  79. Mr. Bluster says:

    To read the apologia on the Sneezin’ thread you would think Trump was just baptized into the Libertarian Church.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  80. Turgid Jacobian says:

    Y’know, I’m not entirely certain this thread is in keeping with the site’s terms of service!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  81. SC_Birdflyte says:

    It will be very interesting to see how many Republican solons dash to DT’s defense. One thing we sometimes forget about Watergate is that, while Nixon skipped out of town ahead of a hanging jury, the GOP lawmakers who had been most strident in defending him paid a heavy price in the ’74 midterms.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  82. SC_Birdflyte says:

    @michael reynolds: I agree with you about Christie, but DT would nominate him only after Jared castrates him to make sure he never molests the Kushner business again.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  83. Jen says:

    From the NYT–on the timing:

    Building a case

    Senior White House and Justice Department officials had been working on building a case against Mr. Comey since at least last week, according to administration officials. Mr. Sessions had been charged with coming up with reasons to fire him, the officials said.

    “Last week”–this, obviously, has nothing to do with a sudden attack of conscience on how the investigation into the emails was mishandled.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  84. Moosebreath says:

    This seems to confirm the worst fears of those who think Trump really wants to be a banana republic leader. Trump just fired the person in charge of investigating him for obviously pretextual reasons.

    As someone put it in our local rag sheet:

    “Now, the real pressure will be on the Republicans who control both houses of Congress and who, until now, have tended to rally behind their party’s new president despite a steady flow of negative headlines about the dealings between Trump aides like fired national security adviser Mike Flynn and representatives of Vladimir Putin’s Russia.

    The initial response Tuesday night was not encouraging. In fact, South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, one of the few GOPers who criticizes Trump on occasion, supported the Comey firing on Twitter. “I believe a fresh start will serve the FBI and the nation well,” he wrote.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  85. Not the IT Dept. says:

    You’re not gonna believe how Comey found out he was fired. He was addressing a group of FBI employees in California when a background TV screen flashed he’d been fired – and he laughed, thinking it was an employee prank. Slate piece with a large block of text from the NYT:

    http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2017/05/09/trump_s_comey_firing_draws_nixon_watergate_comparisons.html

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  86. Tony W says:

    @Not the IT Dept.: Just when I thought Trump had sunk to the lowest levels of the depths of depravity, he proves me wrong.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  87. MBunge says:

    @michael reynolds: Putin owns Trump.

    Trump is President of the United States. You may have missed this development but Trump can tell Putin to pound sand and there’s nothing Putin can do about it. And now you’re going to start, without anythain’t even vaguely resembling a credible allegation, throwing MONEY LAUNDERING into it? Not just that Russia has loaned Trump money and have influence over that but you’re now hysterically grasping for a criminal conspiracy?

    Did you recently watch that “Law and Order” episode about Russian banks?

    Mike

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 22

  88. Tyrell says:

    Hoover, Hoover !

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  89. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @MBunge:

    now you’re going to start, without anythain’t even vaguely resembling a credible allegation, throwing MONEY LAUNDERING into it?

    I guess you’ve never heard of Paul Manafort, Trumps Campaign Manager?
    I never really considered you one of our trolls…but you really have sunk to atrocious depths in order to keep from admitting you were conned, and conned bigly.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0

  90. Liberal Capitalist says:

    Interesting development…

    Sec of State Tillerson greets the Russian Foreign Minister at White House today.

    Probably not the best time for a Russian representative to drop in for a visit.

    Someone there has to be doing the face-palm while trying to figure out how to handle all this.

    Kelly Anne Conway dropped in to CNN this morning, and from that we can see why she’s not been seen for weeks… What a train wreck! She is like the drunk at a party that knows nothing but JUST WON’T SHUT UP.

    The Daily Show nailed it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v70BsGolxKg

    .

    Observation: As Trump drifts from Populist to an Authoritarian / Autocratic methodology, it seems that the level of polite discussion is dropping at OTB.

    If this keeps up, we will likely hit the Three-Stooges-Pie-Fight stage in no time.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  91. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @Liberal Capitalist:

    Sec of State Tillerson greets the Russian Foreign Minister at White House today.

    And he is meeting with Don the Con.
    Coincidence???

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  92. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @MBunge:

    Trump is President of the United States. You may have missed this development but Trump can tell Putin to pound sand and there’s nothing Putin can do about it.

    Really? You don’t think that if Putin has the goods on Dumb Don that he can blackmail him?
    Oh wait…
    You don’t think. that if Putin has the goods on Dumb Don that he can blackmail him?
    Had to fix that…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  93. Scott says:

    @Slugger: The buzz is it will Rudolph Giuliani. I don’t think he meets your criteria.

    My first question to him would be “What do you think about all the leaks?” Second question: “Under oath, who in the FBI leaked to you during the campaign?”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  94. Jen says:

    @MBunge:

    Trump can tell Putin to pound sand and there’s nothing Putin can do about it.

    There is a solid reason that intelligence agencies look closely into the finances of people they are considering hiring. People with money problems are prime targets for blackmail. Trump has steadfastly refused to release his tax returns, and there is plenty of circumstantial evidence that he’s been dependent on Russian money for years. Putin almost certainly knows exactly where and from whom Trump has received financing…and these probably aren’t the nicest folks in Russia.

    Trump can most certainly tell Putin to pound sand, on that you are correct. But there is a pretty high likelihood that Putin could damage Trump, severely, if he felt like it. You are way underestimating Putin.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  95. CSK says:

    Rumor has it that Giuliani is in the running to replace Comey.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  96. CSK says:

    Apparently Roger Stone maneuvered Trump into firing Comey.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  97. Tony W says:

    @MBunge:

    Trump can tell Putin to pound sand and there’s nothing Putin can do about it.

    well, except release the Golden Showers video I suppose.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  98. Jen says:

    …also, it’s worth noting that the Senate Committee did request information from the Treasury’s criminal investigation unit, one that is specifically designated to investigate foreign money laundering through real estate transactions. So, there’s that too.

    “FinCEN is the federal agency that has been investigating allegations of foreign money-laundering through purchases of US real estate.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  99. CSK says:

    @Jen:

    Yes, yes, yes. I noted this above. This is very significant.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  100. JohnMcC says:

    I see a poll this morning shows that support for the Repub “HealthCare” bill has eroded considerably in the past week. This Comey business is going to have the effect of thinning the ranks of Trump supporters. The longer term considerations make this look like it might be the watershed I guess we are hoping for. But damn! why did it have to come to this? We’re going to see worse — soon — before it gets better.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  101. MBunge says:

    Just in case anyone is missing this point, let me spell it out for you. And I do this not just to be a jerk but because there is something to learn here.

    Trump’s going to get away with this almost entirely unscathed because…

    1. They abolished the independent counsel after the Clinton mess.
    2. They have been screaming for months about Comey being corrupt, unethical and responsible for Hillary’s defeat.
    3. They blasted Jeff Sessions as a racist in a futile attempt to soothe their butthurt.

    So, Trump is going to get away with it because our establishment crippled its own ability to investigate stuff like this, provided a mountain of justification for this firing, and alienated the one guy with the power to do what they want.

    But Trump’s the incompetent one?

    Mike

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 14

  102. michael reynolds says:

    @MBunge:

    You’re making a fool of yourself.

    Proceed.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1

  103. Scott says:

    @JohnMcC: I have been following Trump’s tweets and one thing I’ve noticed is that their is a slow but steady decline of the “likes”. To me this can mean one of two things: people are getting bored of this schtick or 2) the supporters are actually declining in numbers.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  104. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @MBunge:

    1. They abolished the independent counsel after the Clinton mess.

    Apparently you’ve never heard of a Special Prosecutor, for which there are at least two mechanism for appointment.

    2. They have been screaming for months about Comey being corrupt, unethical and responsible for Hillary’s defeat.

    Comey did in fact help get the Comb-Over elected. What he did was, in fact, against DOJ regulations. He was not fired. Because the FBI is independent law enforcement agency. That DOES NOT change the fact that the POTUS just fired the man in charge of an ongoing investigation into himself. This creates an atmosphere where the FBI cannot be seen as being independent, and the President is above the Law.

    3. They blasted Jeff Sessions as a racist in a futile attempt to soothe their butthurt.

    Sessions is manifestly racist.
    You really have become pathetic.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 0

  105. MarkedMan says:

    @CSK:

    Rumor has it that Giuliani is in the running to replace Comey.

    I could see this as something Trump, in his stunted little mind, thinks is clever. But Giuliani is deeply corrupt and I don’t see how he could make it through what I assume will be a thorough vetting. (Not being sarcastic here, the Repubs really can’t afford to railroad through any more of Trumps appointments.) And I don’t think Rudy will want that investigation. Just look up the history of his protege, Bernie Kerik, and his many guilty pleas. Giuliani was a business partners of this fraudster while manyl of the indictable offenses were happening.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  106. Jen says:

    But Trump’s the incompetent one?

    Well, yes–he, and his staff. He’s apparently been trying to find a reason to fire Comey for a week. He–according to a number of sources–thought that firing Comey would be well-received because both Republicans and Democrats have had problems with the way Comey has handled things.

    You have to have a serious case of myopia and/or the stupids to not understand how bad the optics are of firing the guy who has just acknowledged that there is an active investigation into the campaign and Russian ties.

    I really don’t know who has the President’s ear at this point, but the fact that he seemed to be “taken aback” when Schumer told him this wasn’t a good move means that yes, Trump is indeed the incompetent one. Trump really thought this was a good idea. (It wasn’t.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  107. Aelio says:

    The Social Justice Warriors are envious of Trump’s bald-faced’ness. “Don’t like it? Take a hike.”

    Funny Lavrov joking about being surprised by Comey’s firing. And Comey was the one who learned of it while doing his job is front of a crowd and from TV.

    Trump is floundering but hey, they could try to edit out the details and make a super reality TV out of it.

    Who is Trump going to fire next? Why don’t folks start asking him to resign? What’s the deal with his tax returns that they are causing all of this mess to keep them secret?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  108. MarkedMan says:

    So it looks like McConnell is throwing the Republican leadership weight behind Trump. I think they will come to regret this. Things are only going to get worse. In all of recorded history, no one who tied their fortunes to Donald Trump came out on the winning side. As painful as it might be, Republican leadership would be better off by a full fledged endorsement of the special prosecutor and then pressuring Trump to resign in exchange for putting in language that quashes the investigation if Trump leaves the presidency.

    Trump will eventually go down because of this. He is completely corrupt and very, very stupid. Josh Marshall points out that the best possible motive that can be painted on Trump’s furious attempts at a coverup of the Russian scandal is that even if Trump himself has nothing to fear (IMHO, that’s extremely unlikely) but that he has surrounded himself with such a cast of sleaze bags that they can’t afford to find out what his associates have been up to. That’s a pretty weak “best case” and McConnell’s embrace of the Donald at this moment is like hugging an anchor as it goes overboard.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  109. Hal_10000 says:

    @Jen:

    I think this gets at the heart of things. Having slept on it, I really keep circling back to the point that Trump is not very bright. Actually, no. I don’t think he’s necessarily stupid. But he’s lazy. He’s not details guy. He’s ignorant and has no willingness to learn. And this is snow-balling now:

    1) Minimal checking on his staff, minimal supervision, going with his “gut” on who to hire. Result: a series of likely compromised people with ties to Russia: Flynn, Manafort, etc.

    2) Minimal suspicion about Russia’s dealings with him, possibly resulting in financial and/or personal ties that could be compromising if revealed.

    3) A raging ego that sees the Russia stories as denigrating what he sees as his biggest achievement: being elected.

    4) A belief that just firing Comey would make the problems go away and everyone would be happy. An inability to recognize the Streisand Effect this would create.

    We’re seeing again that things that work for a businessman — firing employees asking nosy questions — don’t translate to politics. And we’re seeing again that Trump wasn’t a very good businessman to begin with.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 0

  110. Stormy Dragon says:

    @CSK:

    Rumor has it that Giuliani is in the running to replace Comey.

    It’s been 45 years since the FBI had a director that could fill Hoover’s dress, and by God, Giuliani is that director!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 0

  111. Neil Hudelson says:

    Comey is no longer testifying tomorrow.

    Instead, Andrew McGabe will testify. He rose to Deputy Director under Obama, and his wife is a Democratic officeholder.

    Well played, Trump. You replaced someone who may have had some loyalty to you–or at least no partisan animus–with someone who doesn’t give a flying fig about you or your party.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  112. Jeremy says:

    It has to be the Rosneft sale. It has to be. What else would be worth firing every single person who investigates even the slightest hint of wrongdoing by this administration?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  113. CSK says:

    @MarkedMan:

    I don’t get this embrace of Trump. I’m aware of the arguments against impeaching and convicting Trump, from the Repub standpoint–that it would alienate the base permanently, that it would tear apart the party–but at this point, isn’t Mangolini becoming far more of a liability than an asset?

    In Trump’s place, they’d get Pence, whom I’m sure 99% of them would vastly prefer. And the Trumpkins might have settled down by the time 2020 rolls around.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  114. DrDaveT says:

    @MBunge:

    Trump’s going to get away with this almost entirely unscathed because…

    You and The Donald do have one thing (at least) in common: you both radically overestimate the importance of who is “in charge” at an agency, and radically underestimate the power of bureaucracy they head.

    Firing Comey affects ongoing FBI investigations about as much as firing the head of NASA would affect an ongoing planetary mission — which is to say, barely at all.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  115. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @Hal_10000:

    Having slept on it, I really keep circling back to the point that Trump is not very bright.

    This.
    I alluded to this last night.
    @Daryl’s other brother Darryl:
    The fact that he has spent weeks ranting at the TV about the Russia investigations, and then thought he could fire Comey with no blow-back kinda confirms this. I mean, how could you not predict it?
    I think he’s not very smart, surrounds himself with terrible people who will say “yes” to everything, and then pays the price when it all snowballs. I think he was a useful idiot for Manafort and Page and Stone and Flynn…and now the piper wants his due.
    He lost money in Casino’s, a business where “the house always wins”. Clearly he is not very bright.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  116. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @DrDaveT:

    Firing Comey affects ongoing FBI investigations about as much as firing the head of NASA would affect an ongoing planetary mission — which is to say, barely at all.

    Or it could have the opposite effect. Patriots at the FBI will dig in harder, and leak if they have to, in order to get this guy.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  117. CSK says:

    @Daryl’s other brother Darryl:

    And someone, sometime, will leak the tax returns Mangolini wants so desperately o keep hidden.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  118. Franklin says:

    @Stormy Dragon: Surely you must already be aware that it’s a done deal!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  119. Stormy Dragon says:

    @Franklin:

    Yes I am aware, that was the joke. =P

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  120. michael reynolds says:

    For those who have not seen it, this is proof that Trump is at the very least willfully blind to money laundering.

    WASHINGTON, DC – The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) today imposed a $10 million civil money penalty against Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort (Trump Taj Mahal), for willful and repeated violations of the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA). In addition to the civil money penalty, the casino is required to conduct periodic external audits to examine its anti-money laundering (AML) BSA compliance program and provide those audit reports to FinCEN and the casino’s Board of Directors.

    Willful and repeated violations of money-laundering laws.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  121. michael reynolds says:

    @CSK:

    Pence is a perfect stooge for the GOP, but the problem is that Pence is in this up to his neck. He was the head of the transition. He was responsible for vetting and he somehow, magically, managed not to notice that everyone associated with Trump likes to hang out with Russians. The cover story about Flynn lying to Pence is pure horseshit. Flynn was fired because the WaPo outed him.

    If Flynn was the tough guy he likes to pretend to be, he’d realize it was time for a revolver with a single round in the chamber. He’s either going to prison or he’s going to cut a deal that brings Trump down.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  122. Jim Brown 32 says:

    @DrDaveT: This is exactly why Democrats should STFU and enjoy the firing of Comey. I swear, these dunces ask for a chicken sandwich and then make you stuff it down their throats. Comey deserved to be fired. The FBI is investigating Russia (not Comey). You’ll still get your partisan fishing expedition.

    Send Trump a congratulatory tweet. You would have sent President Clinton one no? Frankly, had Clinton became President and fired Comey–which is what she should have done. The messaging and narritive would simply have traded places. This thread would be at Red State and their thread would be here. This is exactly why politics in the USA is broken.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4

  123. michael reynolds says:

    @Jim Brown 32:
    You are 100% wrong. This is a cover-up of a major crime. This is not about Democrats not liking Comey. A major crime is being carried out and Trump is actively covering it up. If he can get away with this, he can get with anything.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  124. Mikey says:

    A mere coincidence, I’m sure….bahahahahahahahaha…

    Days Before Firing, Comey Asked for More Resources for Russia Inquiry

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  125. Jim Brown 32 says:

    @michael reynolds: Unfortuately this is your time to be wrong Reynolds. We all have to take an “L” in the prediction game. You’ve had some glorious victories in the past– but this is where Casey strikes out. Trump is as close to an indictment today as he was months ago when I told you the Russia story and Trump will go nowhere. Russia is the Left version of Benghazi. Useful as a discrediting campaign–momentumless in terms of generating a real crime with real charges.

    I’ve said before that todays Liberal and Conservative are North and South poles of the SAME magnet. Its ringing true on the daily.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 8

  126. michael reynolds says:

    @Jim Brown 32:

    Let’s agree to bet an adult beverage, should we ever both find ourselves in the vicinity of a bar.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  127. CSK says:

    @michael reynolds:

    I take your point, but…if Pence goes down, President Ryan is waiting in the wings. For Republicans, either way is a win. They get rid of a deeply stupid, easily manipulated, infantile narcissist with zero impulse control, whom the vast majority of them secretly loathe, no matter what they say publically.

    Do I think Flynn will fall on his sword? No. I think he’ll cut a deal. He must really hate Trump at this point. And if he cuts a deal and tells everything he knows, he could be doing his country a service.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  128. Kylopod says:

    @Jim Brown 32:

    I’ve said before that todays Liberal and Conservative are North and South poles of the SAME magnet. Its ringing true on the daily.

    And right there is a perfect encapsulation of the central dogma of the Religion of False Equivalence.

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  129. michael reynolds says:

    @CSK:
    My guess is that Flynn stopped caring about the country about ten seconds after Obama fired him. This whole thing stinks of, “I’ll show them!” The “lock her up!” moment was about sweet revenge for Flynn.

    And he won’t get blanket immunity – he’ll still have to do some time. He’s 59 – even a five year stretch would be tough. He may picture himself as Gordon Liddy reborn, may want to tough it out. But I’m guessing there’s a 10% chance he eats a bullet.

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  130. CSK says:

    @michael reynolds:

    My point exactly: “I’ll show them!” He would inadvertently/unintentionally be doing the country a service.

    Five years in Club Fed (with time off for good behavior) might seem a good deal. He has nothing to lose at this point. Why deny himself the satisfaction of taking down Trump?

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  131. Tyrell says:

    @Stormy Dragon: Yes, no one has filled the shoes of Mr. Director, J. Edgar Hoover. Hoover would actually go out on raids and arrests, carrying a sub-machine gun. When was the last time a director did that ?
    As a student in junior high school, I well remember studying the FBI and it was my favorite place to visit when I went to Washington. And the network tv program “The FBI ” with Efrem Zimabalist Jr: couldn’t be beat.
    Hoover also kept the communists from infiltrating this country.

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  132. Jim Brown 32 says:

    @michael reynolds: That’d be a double or triple shot I’d consider it a joy to buy. I’d be glad to be be wrong on this one.

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  133. Jim Brown 32 says:

    @Kylopod: Actually it isn’t– because the opposite poles of a magnet actually DO have DIFFERENT polarities. You’re cut from the same cloth–experiences simply led you to a different set of conclusions. We need a different kind of cloth to restore balance to the political process–the kind that cares about interests and will publicly curse and/or praise their pet political party based solely on whether said party supports or rejects those stances. Right now we have party supporters that protest or champion activities based on who does them…not the activities themselves.

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  134. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @Turgid Jacobian: Ya think? On the other hand, I’m just relieved that the commentariat has managed to hold to it’s high standards of thoughtful discussion and not turned it into a vulgar, extended name-calling session.

    ( :-/ — off.)

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  135. Kylopod says:

    @Jim Brown 32: I’ve already said I’m not expecting the Russia scandal to bring down Trump. I wouldn’t be shocked if it does, but I’m not betting on it. But that has entirely to do with what I think of the current Republican leadership, not with the substance of the charges, which really are damning. Benghazi, in contrast, was a nothingburger. Now, I can hear you already: “But the Republicans say the same thing in reverse: that Russia-gate is the nothingburger, and Benghazi was really damning!”

    Even that isn’t entirely correct (there are far more Republicans who think the Russia story has legs than there ever were Dems who thought the same about Benghazi–indeed, the Comey firing is proof of that), but put that aside for the moment. Even if Democratic rhetoric on Russia happened to be a perfect mirror image of what the GOP had said about Benghazi, that in itself tells us absolutely nothing about the relative merits of each charge. If you want to know whether a scandal is deserving of the attention it gets, the solution is to evaluate it against the evidence, not to make the mundane observation that partisans act like partisans!

    When you’re committed in advance to viewing the political divide as a mere tribal rivalry akin to Red Sox vs. Yankees, rather than a matter of actual right and wrong that affects lives, then nothing I say will ever shake you. That’s why this viewpoint is so popular among the Beltway class. It’s seductive because it’s a way of automatically casting oneself as the Reasonable Person without having to actually exercise any thought.

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  136. Jim Brown 32 says:

    @Kylopod: Fair points but I’m one of those people who neither Political Party represents my views on Government and its role in the economy and our personal lives. In fact, I see the major parties as not even asking, let alone attempting to answer the relevant questions that will set the country on a firm footing to thrive in the new environment driven by technology and the rapidly evolving mindsets of Americans and the World.

    So from my standpoint I see very few right and wrongs. I see wrong and dead wrong.

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  137. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @MarkedMan:

    In all of recorded history, no one who tied their fortunes to Donald Trump came out on the winning side.

    Bill Rancic–the first winner of The Apprentice–seems to have done okay. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Rancic

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  138. Jen says:

    @Just ‘nutha ig’nint cracker: Kelly Perdew, second winner of The Apprentice, is doing quite well too.

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