Former Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) blasted former FBI director James Comey in a statement Thursday after the Department of Justice (DOJ) Office of Inspector General (OIG) released a damning report revealing Comey violated several department rules and protocols for dealing with classified information.
“Mishandling sensitive and classified information is no small matter,” Grassley said. “Comey himself called similar actions by Secretary Clinton ‘extremely careless.’ He did this for the stated purpose of sparking a special counsel investigation into the person who fired him.” Grassley continued:
We all saw how that worked out. Self-serving abuses of power are no way to serve Americans. This behavior is especially unbecoming of public servants who cultivate an appearance of honesty, integrity and transparency, and it has done great harm to the FBI’s reputation.
The DOJ’s OIG began investigating Comey’s actions shortly after President Donald Trump fired him in May 2017 and released its findings Thursday concluding that Comey leaked classified information, stole sensitive federal documents, and disclosed FBI records in violation of DOJ and FBI policies.
“The responsibility to protect sensitive law enforcement information falls in large part to the employees of the FBI who have access to it through their daily duties,” the inspector general wrote in the report. “Former Director Comey failed to live up to this responsibility. By not safeguarding sensitive information obtained during the course of his FBI employment, and by using it to create public pressure for official action, Comey set a dangerous example for the over 35,000 current FBI employees.”
Comey was also subjected to scrutiny from the DOJ’s inspector general in a 2018 report for circumventing the power of the attorney general by recommending no prosecution be made for Hillary Clinton’s mishandling of classified material when she was secretary of state. The 2018 report also charged that Comey was insubordinate and violated other DOJ protocols.
Read the full report here.