Oh, James. Can I call you James? You're so right in so many ways, and yet...
Let's talk about ways in which you're right. Right as rain. You've been hauled in front of the House Republicans for the second time for an hours-long closed-door interview about essentially nothing. Republicans have absolutely no backbone and no courage, nor have they the slightest interest in keeping the government running, or they may have used those five hours today towards accomplishing THAT goal. But no. They continue to run roughshod over the Constitution and its citizens, and you gave it to them via the presser after the meeting.
Here are a few samples:
COMEY: So, another day of Hillary Clinton's emails and the Steele dossier. This, while the President of the United States is lying about the FBI, attacking the FBI, and attacking the rule of law in this country. How does that make any sense at all? Republicans in this country used to understand that the actions of a president matter, that words of a president matter, the rule of law matters and the truth matters. Where are those Republicans today? At some point someone has to stand up in the face of fear of Fox News, fear of their base, fear of mean tweets, stand up for the values of this country and not slink away into retirement, but stand up and speak the truth. I find it frustrating to be here answering questions about things that are far less important than the values of this country is built upon. I'll take your questions.
YEAH. Seriously, no argument there.
REPORTER: What impact does it have when the president calls Michael Cohen a rat, someone cooperating with an investigation, and questions how his office was raided by the FBI?
COMEY: It undermines the rule of law. This is the President of the United States calling a witness who is cooperating with his own Justice Department a rat. Say that again to yourself at home and remind yourself where we have ended up. This is not about Republicans and Democrats. This is about what does it mean to be an American. What are the things that we care about above our policy disputes, which are important. This is a set of values that represent the glue of this country and they're under attack by things just like that. We have to stop being numb to it whether you're a Republican or Democrat, stand on your feet, overcome your shame and say something.
Again, I could not agree more - the Justice Department and its work should be the most non-partisan part of our government, and the fact that it is under constant false attack by Republicans in power is doing some serious and lasting damage.
Then, Garrett Haake asked if there was value to this meeting, to which Comey answered that he has no idea what they're investigating. It was just more of the same about Hillary Clinton and the Steele dossier.
A Fox News reporter tried to trip him up with questions about how the Flynn investigation was handled. She tried to sound all informed-like, asking about if it was conducted in accordance to the Domestic Investigations Operations Guide and sh*t like that. He was all, "Of course, what the hell are you talking about? Ask me a real question. NEXT."
Here's another time he hit a home run:
REPORTER: In recent days, the Flynn investigation, interview, the way it's carried out had been criticized. In your view, should it have been handled any differently? How do you defend --
COMEY: Oh, come on! Look at what has happened to the Republican party. They're up here attacking the FBI's investigation of a guy that plead guilty to lying to the FBI. He should have been warned you shouldn't lie to the FBI. He should have been told he could have a lawyer. Think of the state of affairs we've ended up. That's nonsense. I'm very proud of the way the FBI conducted itself, agile, flexible, thoughtful, pursued the leads where you'd want us to.
Absolutely. Director Comey is spot on in his condemnation of Republicans pursuit of a pretend Boogey Man in the form of Hillary Clinton, and stellar in his steadfast support of his beloved FBI in their handling of the Flynn investigation. Republican attempts to tear the FBI down are nothing short of shameful and shameless, and the road to repairing the damage is long.
And yet...everyone could benefit from a little self-reflection, can't they? Listen as a reporter asked Comey if he had any role at all in the FBI's having developed a reputation for partisanship.
REPORTER: People have criticized for you for remembering events, for maybe hurting the FBI's reputation as being non-partisan. Would you say to that?
COMEY: They got truthful testimony from me. When you're an organization director of 38,000, sometimes you don't know what form people filled out. That's silliness. And as far as hurting the FBI's reputation, I hope not. We had to make very hard decisions in 2016. I knew we were going to get hurt by it. The question is how do we reduce the damage. What I'm doing right now is not what I love to do. I'd rather not be talking to you all. Somebody has to stand up and speak for the FBI and the rule of law. I hope there's a whole lot more somebodies out there than just me.
That sounds an awful lot like deflection to me. Think hard, Comey, you really think there was not even the slightest action you took that might have possibly been construed as partisan in, Oh, I DON'T KNOW, MAYBE OCTOBER OF 2016?
Let's give him another shot at the question, shall we?
REPORTER: The FBI's reputation has taken a big hit over the last year. Do you share any of the responsibility for that?
COMEY: No. The FBI's reputation is taking a big hit because the President of the United States, with his acolytes, has lied about it constantly. And in the face of those lies, a whole lot of good people that watch your network believe that nonsense. That's a tragedy. That will be undone eventually. That damage has nothing to do with me.
Oh, reeeeaaaaalllllyyyyy? I mean, yeah, everything between the first and last sentence of your answer is completely factual and I totally back you up. But, again..."No?" "Has NOTHING to do with" you? I'm sorry, man, I believe you're a patriot, and a very good human, but I also believe you were swayed just a little bit by your own partisan leanings. You definitely had waaaaaay more than two doors in the fall of 2016, my friend, despite your Boy Scout pledges to the contrary.