Yesterday morning at 9:00AM CBSN did a live broadcast of the James Comey testimony, former FBI director who was fired from his position by President Trump. The broadcast consisted of James Comey being questioned by the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee about his written memos which, consist of conversations and interactions between Trump and Comey. After watching the entire broadcast I have come to the conclusion that Comey is a hero in the same way Snowden is a hero. Comey made the very hard decision to stand up for the rights of the American people by putting his own reputation and potential life at risk so the we the people can know what is happening in our white house and our president. I believe that Comey was telling the truth based on his consistency and how serious he took the content of the conversation. I think every member of the committee had good questions, I felt some members were making attacks toward Comey including Senator Marco Rubio and John McCain. I question why John McCain was involved in the conference at all considering he is not part of the committee according to the website, and the questions John McCain asked were clearly answered by Comey but it seemed that McCain just didn’t understand what Comey was saying.
While Comey was the acting FBI director he had a total of 9 conversations with President Trump, some in person and some over the phone. These different conversations brought but many issues concerning the ongoing investigation looking into the involvement of Russia during the 2016 election and who may be involved on the US side including the current FBI investigation into General Flyn. Along with direct quotes by Trump from Comey Memos, I found three major points. The first being Trump asking Comey to drop the FBI investigation on Flyn. Comey was asked several times about Trumps comment on the Flyn investigation but I think the clearest moment on the subject came from the conversation between Senator Bisch and Comey.
(Bisch) You wrote down the words so we can all have the words in front of us now. There’s 28 words there that are in quotes, and it says, quote, “I hope” — this is the president speaking — “I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go.
Now those are his exact words, is that correct?
COMEY: Correct.” (New York Times Politics 1).
The Second, point that I found frightening which, was a discovery to me, was Comey’s replies to the several straight forward questions from Chairmen Richard Burr about the Russians involvement in the 2016 election in including,
BURR: Do you have any doubt that the Russian government was behind the intrusions in the DNC and the DCCC systems, and the subsequent leaks of that information?
COMEY: No, no doubt.
BURR: Do you have any doubt that the Russian government was behind the cyber intrusion in the state voter files?
BURR: Do you have any doubt that officials of the Russian government were fully aware of these activities?
COMEY: No doubt.
BURR: Are you confident that no votes cast in the 2016 presidential election were altered?
COMEY: I’m confident. By the time — when I left as director, I had seen no indication of that whatsoever. ( New Yorks Times Politics 1).
Those questions and answers between Burr and Comey scare the hell out of me, because now the investigation is no longer the question of “did the Russians tamper with the election?” but is rather “was General Flyn involved with the tampering and who else is possibly involved?”. With the investigation into Russia being on-going the obvious question arose “is Trump involved/or was involved with Russia?”. Comey claimed several times during the testimony that he had clearly communicated to Trump that at the time when he was the FBI Director there was no direct open FBI investigation on him. The third point that I found important was when Trump comments on the “cloud” that is the Russian investigation and how the investigation is causing him trouble. I believe that Senator Feinstein nailed this issue on the head.
FEINSTEIN: You described two phone calls that you received from President Trump, one on March 30 and one on April 11, where he, quote, “described the Russia investigation as a cloud that was impairing his ability,” end quote, as president, and asked you, quote, “to lift the cloud,” end quote.
What — how did you interpret that? And what did you believe he wanted you to do?
COMEY: I interpreted that as he was frustrated that the Russia investigation was taking up so much time and energy, I — I think he meant, of the executive branch, but in the — in the public square in general, and it was making it difficult for him to focus on other priorities of his. But what he asked me was actually narrower than that.
COMEY: So I think what he meant by the cloud, and again, I could be wrong, but what I think he meant by the cloud was the entire investigation is — is taking up oxygen and making it hard for me to focus on the things I want to focus on.
The ask was to get it out that I, the president, am not personally under investigation. (New York Time Politics 1).
I believe that Trump and the Trump administration are in deep trouble right now. What I find funny is that so many people are shocked by Comey’s testimony. I can see how if you are a strong Trump supporter the findings of the testimony would surprise you, but I am not surprised at all. Based on how Trump has acted during his campaign and so far as president I’m sure he thought he could say whatever he wanted and not get caught. The proof of that was also included in Comey’s testimony by the wording Trump chose. Also, by how Trump presented his issues and what he wanted Comey to do and Comey didn’t do them because that is not how this democratic system works. Plus, what Trump was asking was completely inappropriate! Once Comey didn’t do what Trump wanted he was fired and I’m sure Trump probably thought that was the end of it, but he was wrong. Comey not only stood up for himself but for the American people. I hope that as the Committee continued there questioning with Comey on the unclassified information that they gained an even clearer understanding of how Trump is doing what he wants, thinking he won’t have to face any repercussions because as Sean Spicer says “the president is the president of the united states.” (Meyers, “Late Night With Seth Meyers” 12:12-12:15)