Is former FBI director James Comey a whistleblower?

Melvin Goodwin makes that case on the lefty CounterPunch website. He notes that former FBI director Comey has been criticized for violating FBI guidelines.

He was pilloried for his handling of Hillary Clinton’s violations of security practices as secretary of state, and now for revealing Donald Trump’s efforts to obstruct justice. Although Comey believed he was acting in the best interests of the nation on both occasions, there is no argument that Comey did violate the FBI’s internal regulations. On both occasions, he was calling attention to illegal and possibly criminal behavior by Clinton and Trump.

… As a former whistleblower, I can testify to the fact that it becomes necessary to go public with charges of malfeasance when there are no political institutions willing to take up the cudgel in the name of oversight.

Goodwin is a former CIA analyst and author, most recently, of Whistleblower at the CIA: An Insider’s Account of the Politics of Intelligence. In the CounterPunch piece, he notes Comey’s history of standing up to presidents. He cites Comey’s opposition to George W. Bush’s NSA surveillance and CIA interrogation programs. Goodwin also defends the former FBI director’s handling of the Hilary Clinton email investigation.

Comey broke with tradition in his handling of the matter, but Clinton had been arrogant and deceitful in her efforts to skirt rules for the handling of sensitive classified information as well as rules for the safekeeping of government records.

The “so-called liberals in the mainstream media maligned” Comey for his ego and questionable motives, Goodwin writes. He feels otherwise.

In my 42 years of federal service, I never encountered anyone more willing to challenge both presidents and cabinet officers than James Comey. He was a public servant in the best sense of that term, challenging the unconscionable decision making of Presidents Bush and Trump… There is no better example of genuine ethical leadership than Comey’s in his role as whistleblower.


Melvin Goodwin on C-Span

FBI whistleblower Jane Turner

FBI whistleblower Frederic Whitehurst

NWC: Whistleblower legal assistance


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