Former FBI Director James Comey on Thursday said he doesn’t know whether special counsel Robert Mueller will find wrongdoing by President Donald Trump — and “I also don’t care.”
Comey, whom Trump fired nearly two years ago, wrote in a New York Times op-edthat he only wanted “maximum transparency” surrounding the special counsel’s investigation, which is expected to conclude any day now.
“I have no idea whether the special counsel will conclude that Mr. Trump knowingly conspired with the Russians in connection with the 2016 election or that he obstructed justice with the required corrupt intent,” Comey wrote. “I also don’t care. I care only that the work be done, well and completely.”
Comey also wrote that his “one hope” was that Trump not be impeached before the end of his term, instead encouraging critics of the president to focus on electing another candidate in 2020.
“I don’t mean that Congress shouldn’t move ahead with the process of impeachment governed by our Constitution, if Congress thinks the provable facts are there. I just hope it doesn’t,” he said. “Because if Mr. Trump were removed from office by Congress, a significant portion of this country would see this as a coup, and it would drive those people farther from the common center of American life, more deeply fracturing our country.”
Comey has been openly critical of Trump since leaving the Justice Department, rebuking both the president’s actions and character on multiple occasions. In the op-ed, he wrote that while he considers Trump “morally unfit,” he is not rooting for a specific outcome when Mueller’s findings are complete.
“Wondering is fine,” he wrote. “But hoping for a particular answer is not. The rule of law depends upon fair administration of justice, which is rooted in complete and unbiased investigation.”
Instead, Comey wrote he wants “a demonstration to the world” that the Justice Department is effective and fair.
“That system may reach conclusions they like or it may not, but the apolitical administration of justice is the beating heart of this country,” he wrote. “I hope we all get to see that.”