DONALD Trump has been furiously tweeting at James Comey, the former FBI director he sacked last year, after he said the president was “morally unfit” for the job.

And, in an interview with ABC News, Comey said he thought it was possible the Russians had compromising information on Trump and there was “some evidence of obstruction of justice” in the president’s actions.

Comey said Trump treated women like “pieces of meat” and, in a reference to the clashes between white supremacists and anti-racist protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia, last year, added: “A person who sees moral equivalence in Charlottesville, who talks about and treats women like they’re pieces of meat, who lies constantly about matters big and small and insists the American people believe it – that person’s not fit to be president of the United States, on moral grounds.”

Hours before the interview was broadcast, the president unleashed a Twitter outburst that labelled Comey “slippery”, suggested he should be put in jail and branded him “the WORST FBI Director in history, by far!”

Comey’s remarks came as he was publicising his new book, out today, called A Higher Loyalty, which recounts his career until Trump fired him last May, a decision he heard about on TV.


NOT for us to say, but there are probably one or two. Comey is a witness to the case that the president tried to obstruct justice, and said Trump asked him to drop the criminal investigation of Michael Flynn, the former Trump national security adviser who admitted lying to the FBI. Trump has denied the claims.

Comey also said Trump had asked for personal loyalty and went on to compare him to a Mafia boss.

In one part of the interview, he claimed the president was reluctant to criticise Russian President Vladimir Putin, even in private, and suggested the Russians may have compromising information about him.

He said: “I think it’s possible. I don’t know. These are more words I never thought I’d utter about a president of the United States, but it’s possible.”

Trump’s responses are what we have come to expect – a limited number of characters on a social media platform. He called the book “badly reviewed” and branded Comey a “slimeball”.

In one tweet, he said: “I never asked Comey for Personal Loyalty. I hardly even knew this guy. Just another of his many lies. His ‘memos’ are self serving and FAKE!”


COMEY is discussing his sacking in the most public way imaginable – on TV and in print – giving his side of the story about the investigations into Russian election meddling claims and Hillary Clinton’s email habits.

He describes several episodes in detail, including a private conversation about Flynn, which may be central to special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation. His recollections are presumably valuable for prosecutors examining if the president’s actions constitute an obstruction of justice.

Until he was fired, Comey led an investigation into possible ties between Russia and the Trump campaign and said it was “stunning” to think Russia could have damaging information about an American president. However, he said in Trump’s case, he could not discount the possibility that the president had been compromised.

When asked by ABC’s chief anchor George Stephanopoulos if the president was trying to obstruct justice when he cleared the Oval Office of other officials last February before urging him to close the investigation into Flynn – who by then was suspected of lying to the FBI about his Russian contacts – Comey replied: “Possibly.”

The retired general pleaded guilty last December and is now co-operating with Mueller’s investigation.


POSSIBLY. Mueller’s probe now includes whether Trump obstructed justice by firing Comey. So far, 19 people have been charged. Asked if Trump should be impeached, Comey said: “I hope not because I think impeaching and removing Donald Trump from office would let the American people off the hook and have something happen indirectly that I believe they’re duty bound to do directly ... But you cannot have, as president of the United States, someone who does not reflect the values that I believe Republicans treasure and Democrats treasure and Independents treasure. That is the core of this country. That’s our foundation. And so impeachment, in a way, would short circuit that.”

There was some levity when Comey recalled meeting the president for the first time in Trump Tower: “He had impressively coiffed hair, it looks to be all his. I confess, I stared at it pretty closely and my reaction was, ‘It must take a heck of a lot of time in the morning, but it’s impressively coiffed’.”