In a shocking move on May 9, President Donald Trump fired FBI Director James Comey.
According to two FBI sources, Comey heard about his termination over the phone while he was traveling for the bureau in Los Angeles. Another FBI official told ABC News that Comey learned he had been fired when he came across a news report on TV.
Counselor to the POTUS, Kellyanne Conway, appeared on Anderson Cooper’s show on CNN to discuss the recent firing when the host asked her about why Trump suddenly took the drastic decision.
"I think you're looking at the wrong set of facts here. In other words, you're going back to the campaign. This man is the president of the United States, he acted decisively today. He took the recommendation of his deputy attorney general, who oversees the …"
"That makes no sense—," Cooper started to say.
"It does make sense, Anderson, I get that's a new talking point," Conway replied.
"He said one thing as a candidate and now he's concerned as president?" Cooper went on grilling her.
"It makes complete sense because he has lost confidence in the FBI director and he took the recommendation of Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general to whom the FBI director reports," Conway fired back.
She also added that Rosenstein's recommendation to fire the FBI director was to restore "public confidence in the FBI.”
Cooper then went on to question Conway about whether Comey’s firing at this point in time had particular significance since the FBI was currently looking into the Trump campaign’s ties with Russia.
FBI Director Comey was the best thing that ever happened to Hillary Clinton in that he gave her a free pass for many bad deeds! The phony...— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 3, 2017
"Sen. Schumer just said this raises real concerns ... He essentially said this is a cover-up today," Cooper said.
Cryin' Chuck Schumer stated recently, "I do not have confidence in him (James Comey) any longer." Then acts so indignant. #draintheswamp— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 10, 2017
"Well, he's wrong. It's not a cover-up. In fact, the president makes very clear in his letter the fact that Mr. Comey, on at least three occasions, assured the president that he is not under investigation,” the counselor replied. However, Conway had no answer when Cooper asked her when those assurances were made.
It is important to note here that Conway’s statement is absolutely false, since, just in mid-March, Comey confirmed the FBI was investigating Trump for ties with Russia.
Interestingly, Trump has previously always praised Comey for doing the “right thing.”
During the Hillary Clinton e-mail probe Donald Trump has said Comey was doing the right thing with the way he was handling the matter.
Conway insisted that the two things were unrelated and while Trump's praise for Comey was while he was only a candidate, now he is the POTUS who just took "decisive action" in the White House.
Cooper, who was visibly frustrated by Conway’s excuses, interrupted her and said: "So, that person doesn't exist anymore? Candidate Donald Trump, that's a fictional character we're no longer allowed to refer to? We can now only refer to the Donald Trump who exists today?"
"Anderson, I'll ignore how unkind that is and all I'll say is that as president of the United States, he needs confidence in his FBI director and he doesn't have it," Conway replied.
@realDonaldTrump You said before that Dem criticism of Comey proved HRC's email scandal, so by your very own logic, firing Comey proves Russian collusion.— Trump is Guilty (@williamlegate) May 10, 2017
@realDonaldTrump Firing the director of the agency investigating you for corruption is a dictator-level move. This needs to be fought from both sides.— Trump is Guilty (@williamlegate) May 10, 2017
@realDonaldTrump You lied to Comey in your letter firing him claiming that you're "not under investigation"— Trump is Guilty (@williamlegate) May 10, 2017
…eerily similar to Nixon's: "I am not a crook"
@realDonaldTrump Comey getting canned is proof this admin will try to ax anybody who is not a Trump apologist, enabler and/or worshiper.— Adam Best (@adamcbest) May 10, 2017
@realDonaldTrump You only fired Comey because he was close to finding evidence to convict you— Cole Ledford (@ColeLedford11) May 10, 2017
Comey's firing has been criticized by analysts and lawmakers, Democrats and Republicans alike.
Legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin called it a "grotesque abuse of power."