The Republican National Committee is ripping into James Comey’s comments during his TV appearance Sunday touting his forthcoming book with a fact-check picking apart the former FBI director's claims.
“James Comey’s publicity tour reaffirms that his true higher loyalty is to himself,” RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said after the ABC interview. “The only thing worse than Comey’s history of misconduct is his willingness to say anything to sell books. He has no credibility and President Trump was right to follow through on the bipartisan calls for him to be fired.”
The RNC took issue with Comey’s claim that Trump directed him to drop the federal investigation of former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.
The group argued that Comey’s sworn, May 2017 Senate testimony proves his version of the conversation with Trump about Flynn “is a lie.”
“Comey testified that he had never been asked to halt an investigation for political reasons,” said the group, which linked to a YouTube video of the hearing. The RNC also said that in June 2017, Comey “admitted when pressed that neither President Trump nor his staff asked him to stop the Russia investigation.”
Comey said at the time that Trump asked him to "let this go" but that Trump did not order him to do so.
On Comey’s comment that Trump is “unethical” and “untethered to truth and institutional values,” the group countered that, “Comey has proven himself to be all of these things, and then some.”
The RNC said Comey -- fired in May 2017 by Trump -- leaked bureau documents to protect himself and to try to make himself “look good in the press.”
Comey acknowledged on Capitol Hill that he in fact directed the content of a memo he kept regarding a conversation with Trump be leaked to the press.
“Comey has been caught in repeated contradictions and lies,” the RNC said. “Comey broke his own rules at the FBI when he leaked documents to the press.”
As Comey defended his actions, the group also listed several other alleged inconsistencies -- including Comey apparently usurping then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s authority and breaking FBI procedure when he “unilaterally called an end to the Clinton email investigation.”
The group also said Comey didn’t correctly handle the initial public statements about the investigation into Clinton’s use of private email serves while secretary of state, as he claims.
“The facts,” the RNC said, “Comey broke longstanding FBI and [Justice Department] protocol several times by publicly acknowledging the existence of ongoing FBI investigations.”
In the wide-ranging ABC interview in promotion of "A Higher Loyalty," Comey blasted Trump as “morally unfit to be president.” Trump and the RNC have preemptively hammered the former FBI boss in advance of the book's release, with a flurry of tweets and rapid-response email blasts.