Comey was Also ‘Mildly Nauseated’ by Trump Hug
News reports after the Comey firing showed that the proximate immediate cause of this outrageous abuse of power was Comey’s Senate testimony. That is something that many suspected but what’s interesting is what part of what Comey said really got Trump’s knickers in a twist.
Greg Sargent at the Plum Line had a very interesting analysis the day after where he quoted directly from a NY Times report:
“In private, aides said, Mr. Trump has been nursing a collection of festering grievances, including Mr. Comey’s handling of the Russia investigation, his seeming lack of interest in pursuing anti-Trump leaks and the perceived disloyalty over the wiretapping claim.”
“Mr. Comey’s fate was sealed by his latest testimony about the bureau’s investigation into Russia’s efforts to sway the 2016 election and the Clinton email inquiry. Mr. Trump burned as he watched, convinced that Mr. Comey was grandstanding. He was particularly irked when Mr. Comey said he was “mildly nauseous” to think that his handling of the email case had influenced the election, which Mr. Trump took to demean his own role in history.”
After that testimony, Democrats were outraged when they heard that what Comey had said about Huma Abedin passing on classified emails to Anthony Weiner’s laptop wasn’t true-it at the least was very misleading.
But what offended Trump was Comey’s expression of ‘mild nausea’ at the thought that his action might have swung the election.
Trump isn’t going to like what Comey says about their (in)famous hug either.
Per Ben Wittes, based on his own private conversations with Comey:
“Comey took the long walk across the room determined, he told me, that there was not going to be a hug. Bad enough that he was there; bad enough that there would be a handshake; he emphatically did not want any show of warmth.”
“Again, look at the video, and you’ll see Comey preemptively reaching out to shake hands. Trump grabs his hand and attempts an embrace. The embrace, however, is entirely one sided.”
“Comey was disgusted. He regarded the episode as a physical attempt to show closeness and warmth in a fashion calculated to compromise him before Democrats who already mistrusted him.”
“The loyalty dinner took place five days later.”
So he was mildly nauseated that he might have swung the election. He was disgusted by The Trump Hug.
Louis Mensch has, of course, been a huge fan of Comey throughout this entire Tom Clancy novel run amok. Since his firing, she has declared ‘Every day is National Comey Day.’
I’ve been much more skeptical-Comey still needs to explain his actions during the email probe-the Press Conference, The Letter, etc. We need a line by line investigation of the entire email probe-that looks at Comey as well as other agents who worked the case with him and the famous rogue agents at the NY FBI and also the NYPD. There is one going on in the DOJ IG office due out at the end of 2017. Good, but there needs to be a parallel, concurrent Congressional investigation-that likely will have to wait for a Dem House.
But I have to admit, the more I’ve heard about him lately, the more I like him.I was pretty disgusted by The Hug as well. Indeed, it almost looked like Trump was trying to kiss him. A thank you smooch for an election well swung.
So I’m very happy to hear Comey was also disgusted by it.
Bottomline, Comey, while a Republican, had a lot of respect for Obama-even if he did contribute in both 2008 and 2012 to his opponent-and did not feel that way at all about Trump.
Back to Ben Wittes:
“Comey never said specifically that this policing was about the Russia matter, but I certainly assumed that it was—probably alongside other things. While I do not know how many incidents we’re talking about, how severe they were, or their particular character, I do know this: Comey understood Trump’s people as having neither knowledge of nor respect for the independence of the law enforcement function. And he saw it as an ongoing task on his part to protect the rest of the Bureau from improper contacts and interferences from a group of people he did not regard as honorable. This was a general preoccupation of Comey’s in the months he and Trump overlapped—and the difference between this relationship and his regard for Obama (which was deep) was profound and palpable.”
Interestingly, Comey also had some reservations about Rod Rosenstein. Why? Because he’s a survivor. Very interesting comments:
“He said one other thing that day that, in retrospect, stands out in my memory: he expressed wariness about the then-still-unconfirmed deputy attorney general nominee, Rod Rosenstein. This surprised me because I had always thought well of Rosenstein and had mentioned his impending confirmation as a good thing. But Comey did not seem enthusiastic. The DOJ does need Senate-confirmed leadership, he agreed, noting that Dana Boente had done a fine job as acting deputy but that having confirmed people to make important decisions was critical. And he agreed with me that Rosenstein had a good reputation as a solid career guy.”
That said, his reservations were palpable. “Rod is a survivor,” he said. And you don’t get to survive that long across administrations without making compromises. “So I have concerns.”
The Dems also are not ‘Feeling the Rod’ as they had some sharp exchanges with his stonewalling in a recent private hearing with him.
Certainly don’t trust him so much as verify as well as Robert Mueller-if the latest GOP claims of what he says are accurate-though I’m very skeptical that they are.
This should not happen. Mueller's scope is investigating crimes. We need to know the totality of what happened ASAP. https://t.co/6JbsWe1WRG
— Brian Klaas (@brianklaas) May 19, 2017
I’m very skeptical he really said this-though if he did, then all the support he’s gotten is wrongheaded and he’s not the right person for the job after all. Just as I’m skeptical that they suddenly can’t reach Comey. But that’s the story for my next post.
P.S. As we saw in my poll out last week, the long awaited poll results are in, and right now I’m just 11 points down vs. Peter King (GOP-NY-District 2). And the voters don’t even know who I am yet.
There is nothing more important in getting answers to Trump-Russia collusion than a Democratic House in 2019. Please donate to help me in my part of the effort to fight for a Dem House.
Thank you. We must have a Dem House. And so, we will.