FORT WORTH (CBS11) – While all eyes and ears were focused on the James Comey Senate Intelligence Committee hearing in Washington, D.C. Thursday, local attorney and former U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas, Richard Roper offered his insight into what was said.
Roper worked for Comey during their time with the Department of Justice.
Comey began his testimony with an impassioned statement about what he claims the Trump Administration has made of his work and reputation since he was fired by President Trump last month.
“The administration then chose to defame me and the FBI by saying that the organization was in disarray. That it was poorly led. That the workforce had lost confidence in it’s leader. Those were lies plain and simple,” said Comey.
Roper reacted to that statement saying, “I got the impression that Mr. Comey was very offended by the President’s comments about the morale at the FBI and one of the reasons he was fired.”
Roper describes Comey as a trusted leader within the organizations he has worked in, and says what surprised him the most was Comey’s own admission of leaking a memo to reporters through a friend because of President Trump’s tweet about recordings of their meetings.
“I don’t know why he did that,” said Roper. “I think there were other routes that he could have gone through to achieve the same results. I don’t understand why he would go through a third party to leak information to the press.”
President Trump’s personal attorney Marc Kasowitz also reacted to the hearing and specifically addressed statement made by Comey that the President ordered him to back off those linked to the Russia investigation.
Kasowitz said, “The President never informed or directed or suggested that Mr. Comey stop investigating anyone. The President also never told Mr. Comey ‘I need loyalty. I expect loyalty’.”
Roper said the hearing didn’t offer the slam dunk conclusion into the investigation of whether there is enough evidence to pursue allegations of obstruction of justice against the President.
“We’re going to have to guard ourselves to the fact that this investigation is going to go on for a while,” said Roper.