President Donald Trump on Friday lashed out at former FBI director James Comey on Twitter, calling him an “untruthful slime ball” who deserved to be fired “for the terrible job he did.”
“It was my great honor to fire James Comey!” Trump wrote in his first remarks since the release of Comey’s book that includes blistering descriptions of Trump and his presidency.
In a pair of tweets, Trump accused Comey of leaking classified information and lying to Congress under oath. And Trump said Comey’s handling of an investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while secretary of state would “go down as one of the worst ‘botch jobs’ of history.”
Trump fired Comey in May 2017 in an act that has been under scrutiny by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III.
Trump’s tirade came in response to news stories Thursday on leaked copies of “A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies and Leadership,” a 304-page tell-all by Comey that describes Trump’s presidency as a “forest fire” and portrays the president as an ego-driven congenital liar.
Among the many revelations is that Trump fixated on unconfirmed allegations in a widely circulated intelligence dossier that Russians had filmed him interacting with prostitutes in Moscow in 2013.
In attempt to blunt the impact of the new book, the Republican National Committee is waging a widespread campaign to undercut Comey’s credibility, including a new website that dubs the former FBI director as “Lyin’ Comey.”
The RNC effort was launched in advance of a media blitz by Comey that began Friday morning as ABC News aired segments of a longer interview scheduled for Sunday night. During the segment, Comey said he didn’t know whether to believe Trump’s denial that he had spent time with prostitutes in Moscow.
“I honestly thought these words would never come out of my mouth, but I don’t know whether the current president of the United States was with prostitutes peeing on each other in Moscow in 2013. It’s possible, but I don’t know,” Comey told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos.
Some of the early news coverage of Comey’s memoir has made a mockery of Trump, including the cover of Friday’s Daily News in New York. It’s lead headline is “PEE BRAIN!” — a reference to unconfirmed allegations in the dossier that Trump had watched prostitutes urinate on themselves in a Moscow hotel suite.
In the book, Comey also writes of some of Trump’s physical attributes in an unflattering way.
“His face appeared slightly orange,” Comey writes, “with bright white half-moons under his eyes where I assumed he placed small tanning goggles, and impressively coiffed, bright blond hair, which upon close inspection looked to be all his.”
On Friday morning, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway called the Comey book “a revisionist view of history” and accused the former FBI director of taking “unnecessary immature potshots.”
Washington Post writer Philip Rucker contributed to this report.
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