James Comey describes Trump as ‘shrunken, withered figure’ in new op-ed
Former FBI Director James Comey said President Trump has become a “shrunken, withered figure,” and urged Americans to challenge his actions.
Comey outlined the urgency in what he defined as the “fourth, and final, stage,” of dealing with Trump’s rhetorical attacks on his critics as part of an op-ed published Monday in The Washington Post.
“What’s it like to be personally and publicly attacked by the president of the United States? Like many others in and out of government, I have some experience,” wrote Comey, who was fired by Trump and has feuded with the president for more than two years.
“It’s hard on good people, especially those who don’t have savings to fall back on,” he continued. “But the truth is that, in many ways, it is not as hard as you might think, especially as it continues endlessly, leaking power, shrinking its source.”
Comey said the initial shock of learning the president tweeted an attack about you wears off, becoming a “kind of numbness” in its second stage and then the “impact diminishes” in a third.
“It no longer feels as though the most powerful human on the planet is after you. It feels as though a strange and slightly sad old guy is yelling at you to get off his lawn, echoed by younger but no less sad people in red hats shouting, ‘Yeah, get off his lawn!’ ” Comey wrote.
He referenced a viral video of a few world leaders appearing to gossip about Trump earlier this month as well as Trump’s declining Twitter engagement to argue that Trump “seems diminished.”
“I don’t mean to suggest Trump is not dangerous. The horrific betrayal of allies in northern Syria demonstrates that an impetuous and amoral leader can do great harm, even in shrunken form,” Comey adds.
“For the fourth, and final, stage, we need to fight through our fatigue and contempt for this shrunken, withered figure. Spurred by the danger he poses to our nation and its values, we have to overcome the shock and numbness of earlier stages. We must not look away,” Comey wrote.
Trump fired Comey in May 2017 as the bureau investigated Russian interference in the presidential election.
The president’s decision to oust the FBI director triggered questions about whether Trump was trying to obstruct justice.
Comey continued to be a constant target of Trump’s attacks as former special counsel Robert Mueller investigated Russian interference. Trump also railed against Mueller and the investigation.
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