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11 May 2017 - Donald Trump Fires FBI Director James Comey

President Trump fires FBI Director Comey
Devlin Barrett, Adam Entous and Philip Rucker (The Washington Post, 11/05/2017)

President Trump fired FBI Director James B. Comey on Tuesday, at the recommendation of senior Justice Department officials who said he had treated Hillary Clinton unfairly and in doing so damaged the credibility of the FBI and the Justice Department.

The startling development comes as Comey was leading a counterintelligence investigation to determine whether associates of Trump may have coordinated with Russia to interfere with the U.S. presidential election last year. It wasn’t immediately clear how Comey’s ouster will affect the Russia probe, but Democrats said they were concerned that his ouster could derail the investigation.

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Epic Firing
 
Behind the scenes of James Comey's epic firing
Kevin Liptak (CNN, 10/05/2017)
 
A little past 5 p.m. Tuesday, a black Ford Taurus slowed to a stop just outside FBI headquarters in Washington and dispatched a white-haired man in a dark suit.

He emerged from the car alone, a manila folder in his right hand, and walked slowly toward the agency's appointment gate. Passers-by paid little notice.

But Keith Schiller, President Donald Trump's pugnacious former bodyguard who now sits sentry outside the Oval Office doors, was at the law enforcement agency armed with a bombshell message from his longtime boss to FBI Director James Comey: "You are hereby terminated and removed from office."

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Republican Party

Don’t Be Complicit, Republicans
Peter Wehner (The New York Times, 10/05/2017)

President Trump’s firing of James Comey, the 7th director of the F.B.I., was an abuse of power. Republicans — Republican lawmakers and especially the congressional leadership — need to say so. But that is hardly enough.

Words must be followed by actions. At a minimum, Republicans must insist on a congressional select committee or independent commission to investigate Russian influence in the 2016 presidential election and any collusion between the president, his associates or campaign officials and Vladimir Putin’s Russia. What is now in the shadows needs to be brought into the light.

Among the reasons we can confidently conclude that the president abused his power is that the White House’s explanation for the expulsion of Mr. Comey was transparently false, even ludicrous. The reason the Trump administration gave for firing Mr. Comey this year is the exact same reason for which Mr. Trump praised Mr. Comey last year: the former F.B.I. director’s handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server.

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Watergate

Comey's Firing is - and isn't - like Nixon's Saturday Night Massacre
Jeffrey Frank (The New Yorker, 09/05/2017)

On October 19, 1973, a Friday, it became clear that the Justice Department’s special Watergate prosecutor, Archibald Cox, would not obey President Nixon’s order to be content with the summaries of recordings of Nixon and White House aides. Cox wanted the tapes, and it was easy to see that his defiance, or courage, was not going to lead to a happy conclusion. When a reporter asked Cox, on his way out of the office that night, if he intended to resign, Cox replied, “No—hell, no.”

The next day, though, he left, not of his accord: Nixon announced that he was abolishing the office of the Watergate prosecutor, and that its work would be transferred to the Justice Department. (A spokesman said that it would be “carried out with thoroughness and vigor.”) The Attorney General, Elliot L. Richardson, resigned when he was informed that Cox, whom he’d appointed, would be dismissed. The White House chief of staff, Alexander Haig, then told the Deputy Attorney General, William Ruckelshaus, to fire Cox, informing him, “Your Commander-in-Chief has given you an order.” Ruckelshaus resigned, too, and Robert Bork, the Solicitor General, in the order of succession, became the acting Attorney General—at which point the order to fire Cox was carried out. Bork also told the F.B.I. to seal the offices of the special prosecutor, which made the events of that evening—quickly dubbed the Saturday Night Massacre—sound very much like a domestic coup d’état, although it was nothing of the sort. Rather, although it was difficult to see clearly at that moment of drama and excitement, it became a test of the central issue raised by Cox, on his way out: “Whether we shall continue to be a government of laws and not of men is now for Congress and ultimately the American people.” All at once, there was talk of drastic measures; the Times columnist Anthony Lewis noted that “even Congress, which so often rolls on its back like a spaniel, is beginning to face the necessity of impeachment.”

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Last update May 10, 2017
Créé le May 10, 2017
ISSN 2107-7029
DGESCO Clé des Langues