White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders launched a scathing, unfounded attack on former FBI Director James Comey after he criticized Republicans for doing nothing about “lying” Donald Trump as the president subverts the “rule of law.”
“The truth matters …. At some point, someone has to stand up, and in the face of fear of Fox News, fear of their base, fear of mean tweets, stand up for the values of this country and not slink away into retirement. But stand up and speak the truth,” Comey said. His comments followed more than five hours of closed-door testimony before the House Judiciary and Oversight committees about the FBI investigation into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server.
Within hours, Sanders tweeted a blistering attack, accusing Comey of “tremendous corruption” and calling him a “shameless fraud.” Comey has never been charged with corruption. Trump didn’t fire him in 2017 for corruption but because of “this Russia thing,” the president said on national TV, leading to suspicions of obstruction of justice by the president.
There was no immediate response from Comey on Sanders’ attack.
Comey complained after his testimony that being questioned about issues that have been examined over and over again is a waste of time and a distraction from the real problems the nation faces.
“Another day of Hillary Clinton’s emails … this while the president of the United States is lying about the FBI, attacking the FBI and attacking the rule of law in this country. How does this make any sense at all?” he asked.
When a Fox News reporter asked Comey about the FBI’s reputation “taking a big hit,” Comey snapped: “The FBI’s reputation has taken a big hit because the president of the United States … has lied about it constantly.” He also told the reporter that information peddled by her network is “nonsense.”
Comey also lashed the president for calling his former personal attorney Michael Cohen a “rat” for cooperating with the special counsel investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election.
“It undermines the rule of law. This is the president of the United States, calling a witness who has cooperated with his own Justice Department a rat,” Comey said. “Say that again to yourself at home and remind yourself where we have ended up.”
Watch Comey’s full comments in the video above.
This story was updated with Sanders’ comments.