IG Reportedly Finds Comey Defied Authority as FBI Director

FBI director James Comey testifies on Capitol Hill, July 14, 2016. (Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)

The Justice Department’s internal watchdog has found that fired FBI director James Comey flouted his superiors during his time as FBI chief, according to initial information on the report.

The draft of the not-yet-released report from the inspector general described Comey as “insubordinate,” a source told ABC News.

The inspector general opened an investigation last year over concerns that “Department or FBI policies or procedures were not followed in connection with, or in actions leading up to or related to, the FBI Director’s public announcement on July 5, 2016” that no charges would be filed against Hillary Clinton in connection with her use of a private email server as secretary of state. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein later recommended that Comey be fired, criticizing both his July press conference and his public letter to Congress saying that the FBI had reopened the Clinton probe just days before the 2016 election.

The report calls out Comey for ignoring at least one senior Justice Department official’s objections to that letter, which made waves across the country just days before voters cast their ballots for or against Clinton. The official was concerned about revealing information related to an ongoing investigation. Comey, meanwhile, has claimed that he would not have sent the letter had he been told not to by the attorney general.

Elsewhere in the report, former Attorney General Loretta Lynch is said to be criticized for her Justice Department’s handling of the Clinton investigation, including her controversial 2016 meeting with Bill Clinton, which sparked concerns that the former president was trying to influence the investigation. Former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe’s investigation is also scrutinized. McCabe was fired in March after a separate inspector general’s report concluded he had lied to FBI investigators.

A spokesman for the inspector general said his office had no comment when contacted by National Review.

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