Former FBI Director James Comey was scheduled to appear on Fox & Friends tomorrow morning – that is, until the inspector general's report exonerated him of any wrongdoing in opening the Russia investigation. UPDATED
Although the IG report was critical of some of the FBI behavior, overall, as The Washington Post reported, it found “that the FBI’s investigation, dubbed Crossfire Hurricane, was sufficiently predicated and largely confirms previous findings about the origins of the probe by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III.” In other words, the "witch hunt" was nothing but a right-wing fever dream.
Meanwhile, Comey had made arrangements to appear on Fox & Friends. He tweeted about it earlier today:
FYI: I offered to go on Fox & Friends to answer all questions. I can’t change their viewers on Donald Trump but hoped to give them some actual facts about the FBI. They booked me for tomorrow at 8 am. They just cancelled. Must have read the report.— James Comey (@Comey) December 9, 2019
Comey said something similar on MSNBC’s Deadline: White House. When host Nicolle Wallace asked what reason Fox gave for canceling, Comey replied it was, “Maybe we can do it again after the Durham investigation.”
Shortly after the [IG] report was made public on Monday, the Justice Department issued an extraordinary statement in Mr. Durham’s name objecting to the inspector general’s findings as well. Based on the evidence he has gathered, Mr. Durham said, he had recently “advised the inspector general that we do not agree with some of the report’s conclusions as to predication and how the F.B.I. case was opened.”
And The Post:
A draft of the inspector general’s report contained a footnote saying [Inspector General] Horowitz had asked Durham whether he had evidence to support a right-wing theory that the investigation began as a setup by U.S. intelligence using a Maltese professor to entrap the Trump campaign, according to people who saw the draft. Durham said he did not, the people said. That note about the probe’s origins, though, does not appear in the publicly released version of the document. The document has some redactions, but it is unclear if that section was removed or blacked out.
Watch Comey on MSNBC’s December 9, 2019 Deadline: White House below.
12/10/19 Update: According to CNN, Fox has denied booking Comey. The Reliable Sources newsletter speculates Comey may have been "soft booked." Meanwhile, Sean Hannity has publicly invited Comey on the show for a full hour.
12/10/19 Update: Or maybe Fox is just lying:
Hi Ben. I know this is isn’t a lie because *I* booked the @foxandfriends interview for 8 am tomorrow, and it was abruptly pulled while we were awaiting car and final hit time. Will you correct? Or apologize yourself? https://t.co/N8VTQjj69h— Keith Urbahn (@keithurbahn) December 10, 2019
Comey on Hannity for a full hour? Yeah right. Someone is up to some tricks.
We keep hearing that this one or that one has the best chance against Trump, but they ignore the fact that 11 months from now, the Embarrassment-in-Chief will be in jail, out on bail, not even the nominee or going into an election bleeding from every orifice.
The pressure will be on Chuck to negotiate appropriate rules for the trial and he will have Romney plus at least a couple of others to vote down Moscow Mitch’s worst excesses. I hope the Senate Democrats subpoena everyone and every single document then if necessary go through the courts to get them in ‘court’. Can’t see Roberts standing in the way, and he may in fact declare that all the evidence must be made available. He has shown some backbone before and he will not want to be associated with rigged (and televised) court manoeuvres.
If it takes time to get all the villains in court, so much the better – the Democrats will have an uncluttered path through the primaries and Trump will be shedding followers day in, day out.
Fox News is now frantically doubling down to say that the big bombshells will be in the Durham report. We’ll see.
Either way, this is NOT the big counter story that the Pence White House had desperately hoped to see. And the public is instead continuing to watch the inevitable march toward Trump’s impeachment.