The political isolation of Jim Comey

As interviews with current and former FBI agents and executives as well as officials at the Justice Department and both the Obama and Trump White Houses make clear, Comey has spent the past year delivering enemies on all sides all the evidence they needed to conclude that he had become uniquely compromised as FBI director. That cover may prove a fig leaf for Trump’s real reason—hoping to avoid Comey’s tenaciousness as a prosecutor as he finds himself in the FBI’s spotlight—but the seeds of Comey’s downfall have been germinating for years…

“He seemed to think that what was good for Comey is good for the institution. That’s jarring,” one senior Justice Department official said.

Much of the story of life inside the bureau over the past year remains to be written, but the truth is far less sinister than many might believe. Rather than a carefully considered “deep state” conspiracy to sink Clinton, the FBI’s yearlong hot potato game with her emails is more a carnival of errors and misjudgments, all driven by a deep fear that the FBI and Comey would stand accused of the very thing that slowly undermined his reputation and ultimately resulted in his firing: the appearance that he had politicized the FBI.

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