Russia

Here’s James Comey’s Prepared Testimony

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

The Senate Intelligence Committee has released former FBI Director James Comey's prepared testimony ahead of his appearance in front of the committee tomorrow.

You can read his full prepared testimony here.

Comey's testimony is filled with revelations, including Trump's expectations for loyalty and what I believe is Trump's only denial that he hired Russian hookers to pee on each other.

The President began by asking me whether I wanted to stay on as FBI Director, which I found strange because he had already told me twice in earlier conversations that he hoped I would stay, and I had assured him that I intended to. He said that lots of people wanted my job and, given the abuse I had taken during the previous year, he would understand if I wanted to walk away.

My instincts told me that the one-on-one setting, and the pretense that this was our first discussion about my position, meant the dinner was, at least in part, an effort to have me ask for my job and create some sort of patronage relationship. That concerned me greatly, given the FBI’s traditionally independent status in the executive branch.

I replied that I loved my work and intended to stay and serve out my tenyear term as Director. And then, because the set-up made me uneasy, I added that I was not “reliable” in the way politicians use that word, but he could always count on me to tell him the truth. I added that I was not on anybody’s side politically and could not be counted on in the traditional political sense, a stance I said was in his best interest as the President.

A few moments later, the President said, “I need loyalty, I expect loyalty.” I didn’t move, speak, or change my facial expression in any way during the awkward silence that followed. We simply looked at each other in silence. The conversation then moved on, but he returned to the subject near the end of our dinner.

[...]

On the morning of March 30, the President called me at the FBI. He described the Russia investigation as “a cloud” that was impairing his ability to act on behalf of the country. He said he had nothing to do with Russia, had not been involved with hookers in Russia, and had always assumed he was being recorded when in Russia. He asked what we could do to “lift the cloud.” I responded that we were investigating the matter as quickly as we could, and that there would be great benefit, if we didn’t find anything, to our having done the work well. He agreed, but then re-emphasized the problems this was causing him.

My gut says Trump calling up Comey just to tell him he didn't hire hookers is an indication that he really did.

  • Badgerite
    • muselet

      So, regarding the question of an interior life, I ended my Profile with the observation that Trump, who delineated three categories of his real estate offerings—luxury, super luxury, and super-super luxury—”had aspired to and achieved the ultimate luxury, an existence unmolested by the rumbling of a soul.”

      I think that sentence is more devastating than the one David Frum quoted.

      –alopecia

  • Badgerite
  • Draxiar

    Orange Joffrey is so hell bent on having people’s loyalty that it could really fuck him over for people to swear their loyalty only to turn around and trip him. We’re seeing evidence of this happening already with the leaks in his own administration. He is not someone that inspires loyalty because he is not someone to offer it. He only thinks of him…nothing more. When the going gets tough he blames all but himself.

  • muselet

    Hoo boy, tomorrow should be hilarious, what with Donald Trump live-tweeting James Comey’s testimony.

    And by “hilarious,” of course I mean “horrifying.”

    –alopecia

    • ninjaf

      We laugh to keep from sitting in a corner in the fetal position, rocking back and forth comforting ourselves.

  • gescove

    “…Trump’s only denial that he hired Russian hookers to pee on each other.” Well sure… he hired them to pee on the bed, not each other. Urolagnia has lots of variants.

  • Ellen Kuhlmann

    It gets tossed around that Trump is mentally ill etc. He may have some sort of condition, but that doesn’t mean he’s insane as in not aware of his actions. The recounting of the dinner conversation says to me Trump knew what he was asking, was aware of Comey’s stance by his responses or lack of them. Trump may be ignorant, but he’s canny.

    • swift_4

      I think what you’re seeing is a sociopath in the early stages of dementia.

  • Username1016

    Well, I’ll keep an open mind on the hookers. But I kind of hope there’s a hooker tape.

    • swift_4

      Never have so many wanted a video that they didn’t want to see so badly.

    • ninjaf

      I just want to see the fundie Christians who supported him try to explain it away. Other than that, I have no interest.

      • Username1016

        I’d kinda like to see TRUMP try to explain it away. Though if he had the sense god gave a goose, he didn’t PERSONALLY appear on that tape.

  • I agree on the hookers thing. Why bring it up at all unless he was worried that it would hurt him and it really existed?

    The detail of Comey’s statement is pretty impressive. It’s a sign of truthful recollection.

    • Dread_Pirate_Mathius

      Comey took copious contemporaneous notes.

      Meanwhile, it’s not entirely apparent that Trump knows how to read.

    • Scopedog

      The detail of Comey’s statement is pretty impressive. It’s a sign of truthful recollection.

      Speaking as the sibling of an FBI Special Agent, I can say that it’s something I’ve noticed in the FBI agents I’ve met.

      It also means that Trump f#@ked with the wrong guy when it came to Comey.