William Banks on What to Expect During the James Comey Testimony
William Banks, Board of Advisors Distinguished Professor in the College of Law and founding director of the Institute of National Security and Counterterrorism, offers insight on the upcoming testimony of former FBI Director James Comey:
“Comey is unlikely to make any new devastating bombshell revelation about President Trump. Instead, he is likely to add details to what we already know, and to provide context. Comey should provide the first ever coherent presentation of the President’s interactions with law enforcement over the Russia investigation,” Banks said. “All of the very good reporting so far is based on anonymous sources. This testimony will be under oath. Comey’s characterization of his interactions with Trump matter a great deal. Did he feel he had to protect the FBI from him, that he was trying to interfere with the investigation? Or did he view Trump as an oddball who had to be educated on how to interact with the FBI Director? Is the pattern we’ve heard about a kind of pressure, or simply bungling? The fundamental question for Comey remains: Was there any attempt by Trump to interfere with the Russia investigation? If so, what specifically did Trump say or do?”
“The Committee will not focus on whether the President obstructed justice. That is a question for others, in a criminal or impeachment investigation. Comey almost surely will not comment on the Russia investigation itself, certainly not in the open hearing,” said Banks.
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