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Comey says 'Fox & Friends' canceled booking after release of watchdog report on Trump probe

Former FBI Director James Comey said Monday that "Fox & Friends" canceled his scheduled appearance on the show after the release of a watchdog report that concluded FBI agents were not motivated by political bias when they launched investigations into associates of President Trump during the 2016 campaign.

Comey said on Twitter that he had offered to appear on the morning program to answer all of the hosts' questions related to the highly anticipated Justice Department inspector general report.

"They booked me for tomorrow at 8 am. They just cancelled. Must have read the report," said Comey, who was fired by Trump in 2017.

A Fox News spokesperson denied Comey's allegation, saying in a statement to The Hill that he "was not booked and was never confirmed to appear on Fox & Friends."

Hosts Bret Baier replied to Comey's tweet by noting that he would "love" to have the former FBI director as a guest, and fellow network host Martha MacCallum offered a similar invitation.

 

Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz's report rejected accusations floated by Trump and some of his GOP allies that the FBI's investigation was motivated by political bias. Horowitz stated that the FBI had an "authorized purpose" when it pushed forward with its probe of George Papadopoulos, Michael Flynn, Paul Manafort and Carter Page.

"We did not find documentary or testimonial evidence that political bias or improper motivation influenced the decisions to open the four individual investigations," Horowitz wrote.

But the 434-page report criticized certain elements of the FBI probe, including how agents carried out an application to the secretive court created by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) to monitor Page.

"We found that members of the Crossfire Hurricane team failed to meet the basic obligation to ensure that the Carter Page FISA applications were 'scrupulously accurate,'" the report stated.

Attorney General William Barr said in a statement that the report showed the FBI "launched an intrusive investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign on the thinnest of suspicions."

Trump argued that the findings showed the FBI's actions amounted to an "attempted overthrow."

The findings of Horowitz's probe were released just months after a separate report strongly rebuked how Comey handled sensitive memos following his May 2017 dismissal. That report concluded Comey had mishandled classified information, but did not find evidence that he or his associates shared memos with the media that contained classified information.

"I don't need a public apology from those who defamed me, but a quick message with a 'sorry we lied about you' would be nice," Comey tweeted following that report. 

On Monday he wrote in a Washington Post opinion piece that the "truth is finally out" about the FBI's actions.

--Updated at 5:03 p.m.

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