Trump Says He Needed to Fire Comey to Stay in Office - Rolling Stone
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Trump Just Wanted to Remind America that He Committed Obstruction of Justice

“If I didn’t fire Comey, they were looking to take down the president of the United States,” the former president said Sunday as he admitted to a crime

WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 22: U.S. President Donald Trump (C) shakes hands with James Comey, director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), during an Inaugural Law Enforcement Officers and First Responders Reception in the Blue Room of the White House on January 22, 2017 in Washington, DC. Trump today mocked protesters who gathered for large demonstrations across the U.S. and the world on Saturday to signal discontent with his leadership, but later offered a more conciliatory tone, saying he recognized such marches as a "hallmark of our democracy." (Photo by Andrew Harrer-Pool/Getty Images)WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 22: U.S. President Donald Trump (C) shakes hands with James Comey, director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), during an Inaugural Law Enforcement Officers and First Responders Reception in the Blue Room of the White House on January 22, 2017 in Washington, DC. Trump today mocked protesters who gathered for large demonstrations across the U.S. and the world on Saturday to signal discontent with his leadership, but later offered a more conciliatory tone, saying he recognized such marches as a "hallmark of our democracy." (Photo by Andrew Harrer-Pool/Getty Images)

Then-President Donald Trump shakes hands with James Comey, then the director of the FBI, during an Inaugural Law Enforcement Officers and First Responders Reception in the Blue Room of the White House, on Jan. 22, 2017, in Washington, D.C.

Andrew Harrer-Pool/Getty Images

Former President Trump went on Mark Levin’s show on Sunday to promote his new picture book, a MAGA holiday essential you can get your hands on for a mere $74.99 (or $229.99 if you want one autographed by the “author” himself). The provides a glossy overview of Trump’s four years in office, which might not have been possible, Trump told Levin, if he hadn’t fired James Comey as FBI director in May 2017.

“If I didn’t fire Comey, they were looking to take down the president of the United States, Trump said after griping about the Deep State. “Some people said ‘he made a mistake when he fired Comey.’ Now those same people say it’s one of the most incredible, instinctual moves they’ve ever seen. … I don’t think I could have survived if I didn’t fire him. It was like a hornet’s nest.”

Trump, as is often the case, did not specify who exactly the “some people” are who lavished him with praise.

Trump is pretty clearly saying here that he fired Comey because the FBI was investigating his administration’s ties to Russia. This is obstruction of justice, regardless of whether Trump believes the investigation was being carried out by a “hornet’s nest” of crooked Deep State actors.

The people around Trump knew it would be a problem to cite the investigation as the reason he relieved Comey of his duties. The White House initially said Trump fired him only after then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions and then-Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein recommended he do so, citing how Comey handled the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server. Trump said the same thing in his letter announcing Comey’s firing.

Trump couldn’t help but take the credit, though. “I was going to fire Comey — my decision,” Trump told NBC’s Lester Holt in the days following the firing. “I was going to fire regardless of recommendation.”

“And in fact, when I decided to just do it, I said to myself, I said, ‘You know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story,'” the new president added. “It’s an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should have won.”

Trump’s public admission that he fired Comey because of the Russia investigation was big news at the time, given, again, that he essentially broadcast that he obstructed justice. The media coverage of the admission even led Trump to tweet that he hadn’t said what everyone heard him say. “Not that it matters but I never fired James Comey because of Russia!” he wrote on May 31. “The Corrupt Mainstream Media loves to keep pushing that narrative, but they know it is not true!”

The primary reason the Corrupt Mainstream Media thought it was true — other than how obvious it was that it was true — was that Trump said it himself. He all but confirmed it on Sunday, over four years later, and barely anyone noticed.

Trump was right about one thing, then: It didn’t matter.

In This Article: Donald Trump, James Comey

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