Political News

Comey says he doesn't expect Trump will fire Mueller

Posted April 18, 2018 9:54 a.m. EDT

— Former FBI Director James Comey said Wednesday that he does not believe President Donald Trump will fire Robert Mueller, the special counsel leading the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

"I don't think that's going to happen," Comey said when he was asked on ABC's "The View" about the possibility.

"The President would have to fire everyone in the Department of Justice and the FBI to stop an investigation," Comey said. "So it doesn't make any sense to fire Director Mueller and bring the kind of storm that would bring. So I actually don't expect that to happen ... I don't expect it."

It's been speculated, particularly since the FBI raided his personal attorney last week, that Trump might attempt to fire the special counsel as a way of ending what he frequently calls a "witch hunt."

The media appearance is Comey's latest as part of a promotional tour for the release of his new book, "A Higher Loyalty." The former FBI director, who was abruptly fired by Trump last year, offers up a scathingly critical portrayal of the President in the book --- and has not let up on that criticism in recent interviews.

On Sunday evening, Comey was asked by ABC's George Stephanopoulos what would happen if Trump tried to fire Mueller. Comey responded that the potential move "would, I hope, set off alarm bells that this is his most serious attack yet on the rule of law." But Comey also told Stephanopoulos that he didn't think that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who appointed Mueller, would carry out that order.

The President has unleashed a forceful counterattack against Comey via Twitter. On Wednesday morning, Trump said that Comey was "not fired because of the phony Russia investigation," contradicting his statements last year when he told NBC News that he had "this Russia thing" on his mind when he decided to fire Comey.

Trump's allies, meanwhile, have launched a campaign to undermine Comey's credibility.

As Comey was explaining his take on Mueller's job security Wednesday, one of "The View" hosts interjected to say, "well, we didn't think he'd fire you."

"I just thought the same thing," Comey replied, adding, "I'm not the best judge."