According to Michael Schmidt of the New York Times, James Comey learned that he was being fired from his position as the FBI Director by watching the news flash on television.
“Comey learned of firing as he addressed FBI employees in LA,” he tweeted. “TV screens in background flashed news of firing. Letter was then given to FBI.”
Comey learned of firing as he addressed FBI employees in LA. TV screens in background flashed news of firing. Letter was then given to FBI.
— Michael S. Schmidt (@nytmike) May 9, 2017
Schmidt also said that the White House and the Department of Justice had been working on the firing for at least a week, and that Attorney General Jeff Sessions was working on finding reasons for the action.
Comey was in Los Angeles for a field office inspection and recruitment event meant to improve diversity in the FBI. ABC news says the letter of termination was read over the phone to Comey.
He had been under fire when it discovered that his testimony before Congress was inaccurate about the “thousands and thousands” of emails that he said Hillary Clinton’s aide Huma Abedin had forwarded to her husband with confidential information. The statement made headlines as Republicans demanded to know why neither Abedin or her former husband Anthony Weiner had been charged with misuse of confidential intelligence.
It’s been since explained that Abedin was merely backing up her phone on Weiner’s computer, and the FBI corrected the testimony Tuesday.