President Trump chose to keep FBI Director James Comey in his position as he transitioned into the Oval Office, and after yesterday’s Congressional hearing it may have been at his own peril.
Comey’s testimony was disgraceful, at best, and it revealed that he’s more of a partisan operative than he is an impartial law enforcement agent as he was more than willing to throw the president under the bus while protecting the former administration. Comey’s integrity came into question after his failure to indict Hillary Clinton for her obvious crimes despite the mountains of evidence against her, and his most recent stunt has many wondering how he still has a job.
With Trump personally asking the career law enforcement agent to stay on board for his administration, the question has been raised over whether or not the president has the statutory authority to fire the FBI director.
Well that question has just been answered.
Check it out, from Heavy.com:
Under a United States statute that first went into effect in 1968, FBI directors are nominated by the president and must be confirmed by the Senate — a process similar to the nomination and confirmation of Supreme Court justices or presidential cabinet officials.
Unlike the justices, who are appointed for life and cannot be fired — but can be impeached by congress (which has happened only one time in American history) — or cabinet officials who have no set terms, the FBI director is appointed to a single term of 10 years.
The statute establishing the 10-year term limit was passed in 1976, four years after the death of legendary FBI director J. Edgar Hoover, who held on to the job for 48 years.
But according to a 2014 report by the Congressional Research Service, “there are no statutory conditions on the President’s authority to remove the FBI Director.” In other words, the President can indeed fire the FBI director. An FBI director can also be removed by congress, through the impeachment process.
So that’s that. If President Trump wants to get rid of Comey, which many, many people argue he should, he has the authority to do so, as granted by an act of Congress.
After seeing yesterday’s shenanigans, the president would undoubtedly be wise to remove Comey as a part of his swamp draining process, lest he find himself being impeached from the FBI aiding in the political witch hunt against him.