FBI Director James Comey continues to bounce between being a hero to Democrats and being a hero to Republicans. In fact, his letter announcing a reopening of former Secretary of State and Democratic Presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s email investigation during the 2016 election placed him on the side of Republicans while drawing sharp ire from Democrats.
On Wednesday, Comey addressed the reason for the letter’s timing during his testimony before the Senate:
The new investigation was announced when emails that appeared in connection with Clinton’s missing emails and server controversy were found on a computer shared by long-time Clinton aide Huma Abedin and husband Anthony Weiner. Their discovery was made during an investigation into Weiner’s underage sexting scandal.
Comey explained to the Senate that he carefully weighed his two options: “speak” on the FBI’s new findings nearly two weeks before the election or “conceal” them.
“Speak would be really bad,” he said. “Concealing in my view would have been catastrophic.”
Comey chose what he saw to be the less disastrous option.
The day before Comey’s testimony, Clinton sat down for an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour where she argued that she lost the presidency due in part to the letter from Comey reopening her email investigation. Despite that, Clinton still said that she took “full responsibility” for her loss.