Former FBI Director James Comey speaks during a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on Capitol Hill, Thursday, June 8, 2017, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Arguably the most irritating thing about this news cycle is the “leaked” excerpts of James Comey’s new book, which provide us with new and exciting insults from someone with a grudge against Trump… and little else.
There is a reason these excerpts dropped last night. There is a reason Comey is on a media blitz. There is a reason people are breathlessly talking about him.
He’s selling a book.
Comey isn’t out there trying to stop Trump and he isn’t trying to save Democracy, despite what others may imply. He is trying to up his sales. Sure, there’s nothing inherently wrong with that, but the countless people who can’t wait for his “explosive tell-all” or however we’re describing it today aren’t going to get any new information from it.
Let’s be clear here: If Comey had anything damning on Trump it would have come out before Congress, not his book. Why? Because he legally cannot reveal anything about any investigation into Trump in his book.
JAMES COMEY BOOK
Section 2.4 of FBI's Prepublication Review Manual covers:
FBI Employees shall not disclose "information that relates to … the substantive merits of any ongoing or open investigation or case."
Just going to leave that right here …
— James A. Gagliano (@JamesAGagliano) April 13, 2018
And this is something that the folks the in the media who are talking about the book know as well. Which begs the question: Why give it attention if it’s not going to do what it’s implied to do?
Comey pushes it to up his sales. Anti-Trump figures in the media are doing it to keep negative Trump publicity in the news cycle.
The fact is that everyone in Washington D.C., from Left to Right, hates Comey or hated him at some point in the recent past. His decision-making when he was at the top of the FBI is questionable at best. His explanations for his decisions are even worse.
But, he was fired by Trump, bears a grudge, and got a sweet book deal. That’s all anyone really needs, apparently.
I’m no fan of Trump. I don’t really like defending him (and, to an extent, this column isn’t a defense of him, really). But the lengths which people go to in order to make sure negative stories get as much airtime as possible is pretty shameful.
Find real stories and tell them. This isn’t a story. This is an extended advertisement for a book.