- In his upcoming memoir, former FBI director James Comey recounted a meeting that appeared to irritate President Donald Trump.
- During the meeting Trump and Comey talked briefly about an earlier interview Trump did on Fox News, during which Trump said he respected Russian President Vladimir Putin – and waved off the host’s description of Putin as a “killer.”
- Comey said Trump tried to seek his validation on his performance in that Fox News interview.
- Trump didn’t like Comey’s response.
Former FBI director James Comey recalled an encounter with President Donald Trump, one that appeared to have left a bad impression on Trump, according to The Washington Post.
In his book, “A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies, and Leadership,” Comey describes being escorted by former White House chief of staff Reince Priebus to the Oval Office to meet Trump – an encounter he wanted to avoid, due to ethical implications since Comey was overseeing the Russia investigation at the time.
Comey reportedly recalled Trump having “launched into one of his rapid-fire, stream-of-consciousness monologues” regarding a previous interview the president gave to Fox News, during which he said he respected Russian President Vladimir Putin and waved off the host’s characterization of Putin as a “killer.”
“There are a ton of killers,” Trump said during the interview. “We’ve got a lot of killers. What do you think? Our country’s so innocent?”
Although Trump’s response was immediately rebuked by US officials across the political spectrum, Comey said that Trump did not see his words as controversial.
“I gave a good answer,” Trump reportedly said to Comey. “Really, it was a great answer. I gave a really great answer.”
Trump then pressed Comey for validation, according to The Post’s description of the account in Comey’s book. Comey replied: “We aren’t the kind of killers that Putin is.”
Comey was escorted out. He described Trump’s eyes changing and his jaw tightening after his reply.