When then-FBI Director James Comey informed Congress in late October that the FBI was reopening the probe into Hillary Clinton’s emails, her campaign lost its collective mind and called for heads to roll. Fast forward a few months to President Donald Trump’s decision to fire Comey and the scene is familiar: Clinton campaign officials are still fuming, but this time they’re defending him.
At the time of Comey’s October Surprise, it wasn’t a stretch to envision that the Clinton campaign headquarters had a dartboard with Comey’s picture on it.
“Many of us have worked with Director Comey; all of us respect him,” read a letter signed by former attorney general Eric Holder and circulated by the Clinton campaign. “But his unprecedented decision to publicly comment on evidence in what may be an ongoing inquiry just eleven days before a presidential election leaves us both astonished and perplexed.”
The letter went on to complain that the Justice Department has never intervened in the run up to a major election in such a way that would influence the outcome of said election, insisting that Comey’s announcement was not necessarily even indicative of any substantial findings about Clinton.
Now that there is an opportunity to criticize Trump and play up the Russia fearmongering, though, the Democrats are singing a different tune.
Sen. Tim Kaine, who joined Clinton on the failed presidential ticket, characterized the decision to fire Comey as “part of a growing pattern to cover-up the truth,” while Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook released a statement lamenting Comey’s firing and expressing concern that Attorney General Jeff Sessions approved the move.
Clinton press secretary Brian followed suit with his own Russia-themed worries, and former Obama National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes hyperbolically moaned: “This is not normal. This is not healthy for democracy.”
The hypocrisy was not lost on the president: “Dems have been complaining for months & months about Dir. Comey. Now that he has been fired they PRETEND to be aggrieved. Phony hypocrites!” he tweeted on Wednesday.