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This could be the start of Trump’s Watergate

James Comey's firing has led to suspicions of scandal against the Trump administration.

Andrew Harrer | Bloomberg | Getty Images

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With the firing of FBI Director James Comey, Donald Trump may have just started his own Presidential downfall.

Comey, who served as the Director of the FBI since 2013, was fired in the afternoon of May 9th. He learned of his dismissal while watching television before being handed an official letter from the President.

The firing immediately evoked thoughts of a Nixonian cover-up within the government. The problem with this situation is that Comey was leading an investigation against President Trump and some members of his administration due to their alleged contact with Russia leading up to the election and during the eventual transition period.

Trump’s administration stated that the way Comey handled the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s email scandal was the reason for his firing. If this was the real reason, why wasn’t Comey fired months ago when Trump first took office? Contrary to his reason, Trump also endorsed Comey’s re-opening of the Clinton investigation just days before the November election, saying “it took guts for Director Comey to make the move that he made in light of the kind of opposition he had where they’re trying to protect her from criminal prosecution. It took a lot of guts.”

Trump and his advisers had apparently been considering the move for over a week.

The investigation into President Trump has gained steam lately. It got its first big break when Michael Flynn was fired over his confirmed ties with Russia. By April, the FBI created a separate special unit to handle it. It was clear Comey was fully behind the investigation.

Now the ties to Watergate. One of the first blunders that transformed Richard Nixon’s cover-up into a national debacle was the firing of special prosecutor, Archibald Cox, after Cox issued a subpoena asking Nixon to turn over Oval Office recordings. Nixon refused to turn them over and instructed his attorney general, Elliot Richardson, to fire Cox. Richardson refused and then resigned. The same was asked of William Ruckelshaus, who followed Richardson by refusing to fire Cox and then resigning. The third man Nixon asked finally fired Cox and the investigation was handed over to the Justice Department. This was nicknamed the Saturday Night Massacre.

Nixon handing over the investigation to the Justice Department is the main focus here. Trump did the same thing by handing his own investigation over to that department after firing Comey.

The sketchy detail of transferring the case is that the Justice Department is led by current Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Sessions is involved in the Trump scandal as well, as he had direct communications with a Russian ambassador; something he lied about under oath in front of the Senate. Sessions also announced in March that he had recused himself from the investigation and would let the Comey-led FBI proceed.

Sessions definitely isn’t going to convict himself. He’s in cahoots with President Trump. It has also been noted that Sessions led the push for Comey to be fired so that Sessions, himself, could lead the investigation.

What were they trying to accomplish by getting control of the investigation? Now Trump’s cabinet can control what information goes out to the media and what the “official” findings of the investigation are. What is released could just be another example of Trump and his administration deceiving the American people.

The decision to let Sessions head the investigation going forward was met with immediate scorn from democrats, most notably Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, who called for a special investigation done by an individual prosecutor. White House press handlers Kellyanne Conway and Sean Spicer were sent out to trying to rectify the decision to the public, but to no avail.

At first glance, Comey’s firing looks innocent. He’s a man who lacks full support of liberals and conservatives and has made enemies on both sides of that fence. No one would’ve been surprised if Donald Trump had fired him in the first couple days of his Presidency. It was actually more surprising that Comey made it out of the first few weeks of the new regime with his job intact.

The issue with the firing is that it’s happening four months after the 45th President took office. That timing is more than suspicious. The fact that Sessions is taking the lead also points to the White House’s potential need to control information or findings that are released to the public. One way to make sure you don’t get in trouble is to be your own boss. The Trump administration can take this investigation in whatever direction they want from here. With this decision, they may just be trying to save face and get rid of Comey before he releases detrimental information against the current Presidency.

It’s far from proven that this is a cover-up, but based on historical precedents, the timing, and aftermath of the firing, those stars are starting to align against Trump.

The President’s pick to be the next FBI director will be telling towards these claims. If he chooses a qualified and respected candidate, these cries against him will die down to a degree. If he hires another yes-man, the outrage and suspicion against Trump’s actions will only get worse.

The old saying is that “history repeats itself.” If that proves true in this case, the current political landscape in the United States could be turned upside down.

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1 Comment

One Response to “This could be the start of Trump’s Watergate”

  1. Elder Student on May 12th, 2017 7:46 am

    Watergate? More like Firegate! James Comey was a great guy, wish he wasn’t fired. He did a great job as director of the FBI movie.

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