House Democrats walked out of a classified briefing sputtering with anger over FBI Director James Comey’s response to claims of Russian election hacking.
Several of the lawmakers who took part in Friday’s meeting said they’d lost confidence in Comey and had become convinced he’s unfit to lead the agency, reported The Hill.
“I was non-judgmental until the last 15 minutes,” said Rep. Tim Walz (D-MN). “I no longer have that confidence in him. Some of the things that were revealed in this classified briefing — my confidence has been shook (sic).”
Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) said he was “extremely concerned” about what had been revealed, which was confidential.
Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA) was so shaken by what he’d learned that he could barely complete a sentence.
“I’ll just — I’m very angry,” Takano said.
The intelligence community has told President Barack Obama and President-elect Donald Trump they believe Russia hacked Democratic groups to help elect the Republican candidate.
Comey has drawn heavy criticism for announcing a new phase in the probe of Hillary Clinton’s emails less than two weeks before the election, and the Justice Department’s inspector general announced a new investigation Thursday into the agency’s actions before the election.
Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA) said Attorney General Loretta Lynch had “made life very difficult” for Comey, especially after meeting with Bill Clinton, but Democrats left the meeting outraged.
“I’ll wait to pass full judgment, but the exchange that just happened in the final 15 minutes gives me no reason to have confidence,” Walz said.