It’s nice work if you can get it, former FBI Director James Comey said during an interview with MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace at the 92nd Street Y on Sunday.
In a clip MSNBC ran, Comey explained what it was like briefing President Donald Trump and hearing the request about letting retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn go.
“I was to tell him what the threat is inside the United States and I had some pretty hair-raising stuff to tell him and he seemed distracted,” Comey told Wallace. Trump didn’t ask a single follow-up question, Comey recalled. That’s when the president asked everyone else to leave.
“He said he wanted to talk about Mike Flynn and then in substance in that conversation he asked me — which I took as a direction — to let it go,” Comey recalled.
He later explained that the request is obviously “evidence of obstruction of justice. So, how to handle that was something we struggled with and we decided to keep it tight for two reasons. First, we didn’t want to infect the investigative team and didn’t want them to know the president just said drop that investigation.”
Comey spoke in a closed-door session of Congress Friday morning, saying it was a waste of time and shouldn’t have been secret because nothing they talked about was classified.
He noted that the first thing he wondered was why Flynn would be lying about interactions with the Russian ambassador.
“I still don’t know the answer to that,” Comey said, noting that there are probably more things he can say about Flynn now that the case is almost finalized. “It was clear that he was lying. He lied to two FBI agents on the 24th of January in the Situation Room in a conference room. And it was clear that he was lying. But, the ‘why’ was really interesting to us and I didn’t get that answer — I wouldn’t tell you that answer if I found it. But I didn’t get it before I left because I was fired in May.”
Watch Comey’s comments below and the full discussion below that:
Full episode below: