Former FBI director James Comey on Friday called President Donald Trump’s attacks against the Justice Department “deeply troubling” and said Americans on both sides of the aisle should continue to call out the president’s insults.
“The president’s attacks on the Justice Department broadly and the FBI are something that, no matter what political party you’re in, you should find deeply troubling and continue to speak out about it, not become numb to attacks on the rule of law,” Comey told reporters after closed-door testimony with House Republicans, who are investigating what they view as possible FBI malfeasance during the investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election.
The president early Friday morning sent a flurry of tweets criticizing special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe and current Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Comey also drew the ire of Trump, who claimed the former FBI director and the special counsel had a conflict of interest because they had a prior relationship.
Comey’s comments also came after the president announced he was tapping William Barr, who served as attorney general during the George H.W. Bush administration, to resume his old post. Comey praised the president’s decision to nominate Barr, saying “he cares deeply about the integrity of the Justice Department.”
Trump has long criticized Mueller’s investigation, labeling it a “witch hunt.” He also criticized his former attorney general, Jeff Sessions, for recusing himself from the Russia probe.
Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine