Comey is silent but his friends are pushing back on Trump. ‘He hopes there are tapes.’

thierry ehrmann / Flickr comey painted close up...
thierry ehrmann / Flickr

Did Donald Trump think James Comey and his many friends and allies would take it lying down when Trump not only fired Comey as director of the FBI but went on to trash him in the media and threaten him on Twitter? If he thought that, he may be starting to realize how wrong he was. (Then again, this is Donald Trump. His bubble of willful ignorance may be intact.) Anonymous friends of Comey are all over the media, and their accounts got a big boost from former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.

Trump’s insinuation that he had recorded his conversations with Clapper drew a “not worried” from a CNN source, while an NBC source went further:

A source close to Comey told me this morning: “He hopes there are tapes. That would be perfect.”

— Ken Dilanian (@KenDilanianNBC) May 12, 2017


Former DNI Clapper, meanwhile, was live on television under his own name when he contradicted Trump’s claim that Comey had asked Trump to have dinner in January. Moreover, Comey wasn’t happy about Trump’s dinner invitation:

“And Jim and I spoke briefly before the ceremony and he mentioned that he had been invited to the White House to have dinner with the President, and that he was uneasy with that because of even compromising the — even the optics, the appearance of independence, not only of him, but of the FBI,” Clapper recalled.

It seems he was right to be uneasy. And he’s probably right to hope that there are tapes of his dinner with Trump and that they become public.

Comey showed terrible judgment in his handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails, but his reputation for basic honesty is light years beyond Trump’s, and he has a lot of friends who will continue going to bat for him. Plus, at some point, Comey himself might have something to say. Trump is not going to get to define this story beyond his own base

Comey’s staying quiet, for now at least:

Comey has declined invitation to testify before Senate intel committee, per @abwrig:

— Kyle Cheney (@kyledcheney) May 12, 2017


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