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Clinton: Comey 'a reliable witness' for Russia probe

Hillary Clinton said Thursday she believes former FBI Director James Comey would be "a reliable witness" in the federal Russia probe, despite his decision to renew the federal investigation into her private email server days before the 2016 presidential election.

"On Russia, I think that he is credible and that he has firsthand information because of those conversations with the president," Clinton told MSNBC's Rachel Maddow.

"I certainly think he is a reliable witness and apparently has contemporaneous notes that really memorialize what was said and how he responded," she added.

Clinton blamed Comey in her new book, "What Happened," for slowing her campaign momentum after he renewed the probe into her emails 11 days before Election Day.

"I put in the book the very clear critique of how he behaved with respect to me in the election. Keep that apart from the Russia investigation," she said.

President Trump fired Comey in May for his handling of the probe into Clinton's emails but later admitted that the Russia probe was on his mind when he dismissed the FBI chief. That fueled allegations that he may have obstructed justice by firing the person leading the probe into his campaign associates' possible ties to Russia's efforts to influence the outcome of the presidential election.

Comey testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee in June that he arranged for a close friend to leak the contents of personal memos detailing his encounters with Trump to ensure a special counsel would be appointed to investigate Russian meddling in the election.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders argued this week that federal prosecutors should consider bringing a case against the former FBI director, citing him authorizing a friend to share the contents of his personal memos.

"Leaking FBI memos on a sensitive case regardless of classification violates federal laws including the Privacy Act, standard FBI employment agreements, and nondisclosure agreements all personnel must sign. I think that is clean and clear that that would be a violation," she said.

Defenders of Comey fired back following days of White House attacks, which Maddow alluded to Thursday night.

During the interview, Clinton also dodged on whether Comey would still be FBI director if she had won the election.

"I don't know the answer to that because once I wasn't president, I didn't think about it, I didn't analyze it at all. So I don't really know," she said.