Just when it seems President Trump has run out of surprises, he goes and fires incompetent FBI Director James Comey. Hillary Clinton has to be shaking in her pant suit right about now.
There is a TON of commentary out there today about Comey’s ouster; I recommend the Wall Street Journal‘s editorial “Comey’s Deserved Dismissal” (read it here).
The broad consensus of what I’ve read boils down to this: Comey’s firing was overdue, but why do it so suddenly? Reportedly, higher-ups in the White House didn’t know about the firing before the press did (probably due to the many leaks in the Trump White House), and Comey humorously found out while giving a talk to the FBI Los Angeles office.
Predictably, Jim Geraghty at National Review decried the manner in which the firing occurred in his daily “Morning Jolt” e-mail. I’m a National Review conservative if there ever was one, but even I’m getting tired of this hand-wringing over “process” and “decorum” and “custom.” Trump’s whole ethos is that he’s unpredictable, and that he’ll buck decorum and custom if it means results. That might be a problem if the process he wants to buck is the constitutional system of checks and balances, but that’s not the case here.
So, why did he wait until this late date? That I don’t know, but I’ve learned that Trump is usually (though, I concede, not always) playing a 4-D chess match. At this point, we’re waiting for the other shoe to drop. It does seem that Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein argued for Comey’s removal on grounds of politicization of the office and a record of incompetence.
Read the WJS piece linked above for a deeper discussion of this complicated situation. My take away for now: with Trump, you’ve got to expect the unexpected, and patience pays off. He’s on his own time table.
My other take away: good call, Mr. President.
Tyler James Cook is a history and music teacher
in South Carolina. He writes about politics and philosophy at his blog, The
Portly Politico, at https://theportlypolitico.blogspot.com.
He occasionally guest-hosts on In the Pickle Barrel on American Patriot
Radio, and contributes to the APR news section. He is currently working
on an eBook on social conservatism, Values Have Consequences.