On the heels of President Trump‘s late-night tweeting to rebut Hillary Clinton‘s assertion that the FBI, Russia and Wikileaks cost her the presidency, FBI Director James Comey admitted Wednesday some his personal angst over his now-infamous “October surprise” letter to Congress.
Taking to Twitter just before 10 p.m. EST, the president wrote Tuesday: “FBI Director Comey was the best thing that ever happened to Hillary Clinton in that he gave her a free pass for many bad deeds! The phony…”
A few minutes later he added, “…Trump/Russia story was an excuse used by the Democrats as justification for losing the election. Perhaps Trump just ran a great campaign?”
Trump was responding to his former presidential opponent after she blamed Comey, in part, for her loss at the polls last November.
“I was on the way to winning until a combination of Jim Comey’s letter on Oct. 28th and Russian WikiLeaks raised doubts in the minds of people who were inclined to vote for me but got scared off,” Clinton said at a New York luncheon earlier Tuesday.
Comey’s renewed inquiry into Clinton’s use of a private email server during her time as secretary of state was announced just two weeks ahead of the election. It ultimately turned up nothing.
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Said Clinton, “If the election had been on Oct. 27, I would be your president.”
Still, Clinton said she takes “absolute personal responsibility” for the campaigns failure: “Did we make mistakes? Of course we did. Did I make mistakes? Oh my gosh, yes. You know, you’ll read my confession and my request for absolution.”
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On Wednesday, Comey testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee that sending the October letter was “painful,” according to Politico.
“It makes me mildly nauseous to think that we might have had some impact on the election, but honestly, it wouldn’t change the decision,” Comey said. “Even in hindsight — and this has been one of the world’s most painful experiences — I would make the same decision. I would not conceal that.”