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Thursday, June 8, 2017

It Sounds Like Trump's Lawyer is Correct -- Comey Committed a Crime

About five minutes after the Comey testimony ended today (at least the public testimony), the President's lawyer for the Russia matter issued a statement.  In it, the lawyer pointed out that former director Comey had just admitted that he had leaked details of a privileged communication.  Comey also leaked the contents of memoranda about conversations including one which Comey said was classified.  Leaking classified information is a federal crime.  In the Hillary Clinton case, Comey himself said that there needed to be intent before someone could be found guilty (even though the statute doesn't require intent.)  In this instance, Comey testified today that he purposefully set up the procedure under which the material was leaked to the press, so Comey clearly had the requisite intent.

I have not researched if there are penalties for leaking privileged information.  I will put this aside for the moment.  If Comey did admit that this information was classified, however, then the only rational conclusion is that Comey violated the law.  It would be astonishing if the new special prosecutor were to indict Comey on that charge, but it seems like the correct outcome.

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