Former FBI Director James Comey once served the Bush administration and is supposed to be a “registered Republican”. But some gay guys marry women and are supposed to be straight. Sometimes, the declaration doesn’t matter – or is there for cover.
I’ll provide some highlights of Comey’s career, then details. First, the highlights. Or should I say lowlights? As I realized everything that Comey has been into and how political he is, my jaw dropped.
- Comey helped the Clintons to escape justice over Bill’s pardon of Marc Rich.
- Comey appointed Patrick Fitzgerald to investigate the Valerie Plame affair. (A bizarre mess that ended in the prosecution of Scooter Libby, and the political tar-and-feathering of the Bush administration.)
- Comey prosecuted Martha Stewart. (This may be OK; but I will show that it sets up the irony/hypocrisy of his later saving Hillary from prosecution.)
- Comey helped the Clintons in the Sandy Berger investigation, by limiting its scope.
- Comey limited the government’s actions to punish a corrupt auditor, KPMG.
- Comey obstructed the Bush administration’s post-9/11 efforts to do warrantless surveillance. That could be a great thing; except that
- his actions were surrounded by allegations of lying and usurpation of power; and
- he went on to happily serve an Obama presidency that did far worse things than Bush, in terms of warrantless surveillance.
- Comey served as General Counsel of a scandal-ridden defense contractor, then a Director of a scandal-ridden bank. (I don’t have anything strong here; mentioned for completeness.)
- And then as FBI Director, of course, Comey knew Hillary was guilty but usurped authority and blocked her prosecution, turning the statutes on their head in the process.
If I missed anything, please let us know in the comments. For example, did Comey play any part in Hillary’s Uranium One fiasco? (UPDATE: Yes, indirectly. It involved Clinton Foundation corruption. Charles Ortel points out that Comey has repeatedly been on-point to investigate that corruption and has refused to do so, giving it a pass.)
Some of Comey’s actions might be defensible. But looking at the overall pattern: I personally conclude that Comey is a longtime Democrat operative, as well as a liar-when-it-suits-him.
Now for details. First, per Wiki:
[Comey] was the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, from January 2002 to the time of his confirmation as Deputy Attorney General on December 11, 2003. Among his first tasks was to take over the investigation into President Bill Clinton’s controversial pardon of Marc Rich.
The scoop on that (also following Wiki):
- Marc Rich was the commodities trader who founded Glencore.
- In 1983, he was indicted on 65 counts of tax evasion, fraud and racketeering, including that he had done oil deals for the mullahs of Iran during a U.S.-led oil embargo.
- The indictment was filed by Rudy Giuliani. At the time, it was the biggest tax evasion case in U.S. history and led to Rich being on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted list.
- Rich fled to Switzerland. His companies eventually pleaded guilty.
- On January 20, 2001, hours before leaving office, Bill Clinton pardoned him. Eric Holder (later Obama’s Attorney General) recommended the pardon under suspicious circumstances that bypassed normal processes.
- Even Jimmuh Carter called the pardon “disgraceful”. The pardon was probably influenced by Rich family contributions to the Clintons that exceeded $1.5 million.
- Rich had owed $48 million in back taxes. Apparently, that was all settled by his paying a $1 million fine.
- Comey, then a federal prosecutor, was appointed to look into Clinton’s pardon and settlement for Marc Rich.
- Comey concluded “it wasn’t appropriate to bring charges” against Clinton, Holder or anyone else.
Thus, Bill Clinton escaped indictment and then-Senator Hillary escaped having a husband under indictment.
By the way, Scooter Libby represented Marc Rich from 1985 to 2000 and supported Rich’s pardon! Which brings us to how Comey’s career ties into Scooter Libby:
Comey was…subsequently the United States Deputy Attorney General from December 2003 to August 2005. Comey appointed Patrick Fitzgerald to be the Special Counsel to head the grand jury investigation into the Plame affair…
I haven’t thought about the Plame affair in awhile.
- It was a big deal, at the time. It was a “gotcha” investigation that sent Scooter Libby (then an aide to Vice President Cheney) to jail.
- In the early 2000s, Plame had carefully placed her husband, Joe Wilson, for an intelligence-gathering mission to Niger that resulted in the famous “16 words” being inserted into a President Bush speech: “The British Government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa.”
- Joe Wilson later lied about the contents of his own report from Niger, and lied about the circumstances under which he was sent, for the purpose of undermining the Bush administration. Doing so made Wilson a hero to the Left.
- In the kerfuffle that followed, Richard Armitage (a Colin Powell aide) did some gossipy leaking to correct the record, and his leaks included Valerie Plame’s name.
- That set off a huge new kerfuffle about how awful it is to unmask CIA agents. (Plame was stateside and managerial, during all this.) A kerfuffle that the Left would conveniently forget later, when President Obama’s aides would unmask an active CIA agent.
- In the second-level kerfuffle, the FBI interrogated Scooter Libby.
- Although innocent of leaking Plame’s name, Libby nonetheless lied to investigators about his own contacts with Judith Miller of The New York Times, and was subsequently convicted of perjury and obstruction.
What a mess! Where was Comey in all that? I don’t know; but I doubt he was doing much of anything constructive.
As to Scooter Libby: Despite his service to Marc Rich, he ended up more aligned with Bush-Cheney than the Clintons, and thus he could be duly sacrificed when Plame-Wilson needed a good
lie story for burnishing their reputations.
On to Martha Stewart. Again, I think that Comey’s actions here may have been OK, but it’s interesting that he was involved. Per Wiki:
In February 2003, Comey led the prosecution of Martha Stewart, who was indicted on the charges of securities fraud, obstruction of justice, and lying to an FBI agent. She sold 3,928 shares of ImClone Systems, making $227,824. The next day, the Food and Drug Administration refused to accept the company’s application for [its proposed drug] Erbitux.
The idea was that
- Stewart had traded on the advice of her broker.
- Her broker’s advice was allegedly based on inside information.
- Stewart could have not known it (trading innocently); except then she conspired with her broker to make false statements to investigators. And that’s where they got her. They never criminally charged her with insider trading.
- While doing that, she deleted one email. She subsequently restored it, but Comey took the incident as evidence of her guilt. Yes, ONE. SINGLE. EMAIL. *ONE*. That she restored.
- Remember, Hillary had her I/T people destroy thousands of emails and wipe them thoroughly with BleachBit, during an FBI investigation under Director Comey. And she went unindicted.
On to Sandy Berger. The issue there was that Sandy Berger stole classified material from the National Archive that could have implicated the Clinton administration in laxness or negligence about U.S. security prior to the 9-11 attacks. As Jerome Corsi writes:
In 2004, Comey, then serving as a deputy attorney general in the Justice Department, apparently limited the scope of the criminal investigation of Sandy Berger, which left out former Clinton administration officials who may have coordinated with Berger in his removal and destruction of classified records from the National Archives…
Curiously, Berger, Lynch and Cheryl Mills all worked as partners in the Washington law firm Hogan & Hartson, which prepared tax returns for the Clintons and did patent work for a software firm that played a role in the private email server Hillary Clinton used when she was secretary of state.
Dick Morris points out how Comey avoided ever looking at Berger’s motives for stealing the documents: “…who put him up to it, what he was after, what deception he was trying to pull…” Just as, later, Comey was to avoid any inquiry into the question of what Hillary might have been trying to hide, by keeping her government job-related emails on a secret email server in her bathroom.
It’s amazing, how things keep connecting back to the Clintons.
On to KPMG, the accounting firm. Per Bloomberg (via Forbes):
Bloomberg reported in 2007 that back in June of 2005, Comey was the man thrust into the position of deciding whether KPMG would live or die for its criminal tax shelter violations.
“The talks with the government reached a turning point on June 13, 2005, when KPMG partners and lawyers met with the then-No. 2 official at the Justice Department, Deputy Attorney General James Comey, to appeal Kelley’s decision to seek an indictment…
“About two weeks after meeting with Comey, the KPMG legal team met in New York with Kelley and his aides and got the good news: Comey and Gonzales decided against an indictment of the firm, the papers show…”
KPMG went on to play a role in failing to detect the extensive crimes at HSBC. More on HSBC, in a moment.
On to the warrantless surveillance. Per Wiki:
In early January 2006, The New York Times, as part of its investigation into domestic surveillance by the National Security Agency, reported that Comey, who was Acting Attorney General during the March 2004 hospitalization of John Ashcroft, refused to certify the legality of central aspects of the NSA program. The certification was required under White House procedures in order for the program to continue.
After Comey’s refusal, the newspaper reported, Andrew H. Card Jr., White House Chief of Staff, and Alberto R. Gonzales, then White House counsel and future Attorney General, made a visit to the George Washington University Hospital, to attempt to win approval directly from Ashcroft for the program. According to the 2007 memoir of Jack Goldsmith, who had been head of the Office of Legal Counsel at the time, Comey went to the hospital to give Ashcroft support in withstanding pressure from the White House.
…Comey withdrew his threat to resign after meeting directly with President Bush, who gave his support to making changes in the surveillance program.
Sounds heroic! But that’s not the whole story. Per a recent article from Sean Davis,
- Nobody made Comey the Acting Attorney General (a Cabinet official) in 2004; certainly not President Bush, VP Cheney, or AG Ashcroft. Comey appointed himself – and informed the White House with a fax.
- Comey gave dramatic testimony about what a hero he was, at a Senate hearing in 2007. Comey pre-planned the testimony with Chuck Schumer and, again, hid his plans from the rest of the Bush administration.
- According to Alberto Gonzales, Comey’s testimony was full of outright falsehoods.
- Thus, in effect, Schumer and Comey conspired to lie publicly about the Bush administration.
- We should also note that the Edward Snowden revelations showed the Obama administration doing warrantless surveillance far beyond anything Bush dreamed of. That became public in 2013 and didn’t stop Comey from gladly serving Obama.
- So Comey’s stand against warrantless surveillance (under Bush) wasn’t the least bit principled, after all.
On to Lockheed Martin, briefly. Per Wiki:
In August 2005, it was announced that Comey would enter the private sector, becoming the General Counsel and Senior Vice President for Lockheed Martin, the U.S. Department of Defense’s largest contractor.
- He served until June 2010, reportedly earning up to $6 million per year.
- Lockheed-Martin has been surrounded by allegations of bribery, overbilling and lobbying fraud for decades, up to and including the present day.
- I haven’t researched it – this article is taking a long time, as it is – but simple logic suggests that Comey’s duties during his five-year tenure included the management (shall we say) of Lockheed scandals or potential scandals.
- Per Breitbart, Lockheed Martin connects to the Clintons – through large donations to the Clinton Foundation, natch – and was given numerous contract approvals by Hillary Clinton’s State Department in 2010 (Comey’s watch).
- If you know more, please tell us in the comments.
Comey also did a stint as a director of HSBC (once known as the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation):
He was also appointed to the board of directors of the London-based financial institution HSBC Holdings, to improve the company’s compliance program after its $1.9 billion settlement with the Justice Department for failing to comply with basic due diligence requirements for money laundering regarding Mexican drug cartels and terrorism financing.
That sounds good, except that
- some believe that HSBC’s money-laundering activities are ongoing and continued in full force, during Comey’s time there.
- And does HSBC connect back to the Clinton Foundation? You bet. Per The Guardian,
The charitable foundation run by Hillary Clinton and her family has received as much as $81m from wealthy international donors who were clients of HSBC’s controversial Swiss bank…
Another [Clinton donor via HSBC] is Epstein, the wealthy financier who was jailed for 13 months in 2008 for soliciting sex with underage girls. The HSBC files show Epstein connected to several Geneva accounts, one of which was in his own name and contained $3.5m.
- If you know more, please tell us in the comments.
Comey’s role in getting Hillary off the hook has been a topic of several posts in the last 10 months. I hope the above rounds out the picture.
In Comey’s defense: Rep. Trey Gowdy recently said “History is going to be much kinder to Jim Comey and that July  press conference, than the Democrats were” – or than I am. Gowdy went on to imply strongly that the Clintons are under other DOJ investigations which somehow tied Comey’s hands on the e-mail thing.
I hope so! I can’t imagine what Gowdy is talking about, and eagerly await the future news.
UPDATE: Per Charles Ortel, Comey has been a huge enabler of the Clinton Foundation corruption.
“James Comey was a US Attorney centrally involved in this investigation and subsequently in the Justice Department — though he and the FBI and two grand juries held significant advantages, they failed to convict trustees, including then-Chairman of the Democratic Party (now Governor of Virginia Terry McAuliffe) of rampant and obvious charity, bank, mail, and wire fraud that can be seen through the careful review of publicly available documents, [which are] still very much online in many places,” Ortel underscored.
“For example, during the key period when the Clinton Foundation raised money for its core authorized activity — a presidential archive based in Little Rock, Arkansas — from 23 October 1997 through 31 December 2004, there has still not been a legally compliant audit of the Clinton Foundation’s financial statements, in flagrant violation of numerous laws.”…
The Clinton Foundation went on to pay out millions of dollars to Bill, Hillary and Chelsea. And to become known as a “pay-for-play” influence-peddling scheme, in which Hillary Clinton, as Secretary of State, accepted huge “donations” while approving arms deals, uranium transfers, etc. for interested parties. Comey, first as U.S. Attorney and then as FBI Director, had it in his purview to investigate – and repeatedly failed to notice or pursue the Clinton Foundation’s many offenses.