President Donald Trump’s former campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, re-emerged Friday to call fired FBI Director James Comey “the deep state” in Washington, D.C.
“He is the deep state in Washington that is everything that is wrong. He admitted under oath that he gave his contemporaneous notes to a law professor,” Lewandowski told ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos during an interview Friday on “Good Morning America.”
The conspiratorial “deep state” is a vague phrase used to identify a group of frustrated employees within the intelligence community who are allegedly working to covertly manipulate government policy and undermine elected and appointed political figures.
Lewandowski’s comments were in reference to Comey’s admission before the Senate Intelligence Committee Thursday that he leaked a memo to “a close friend” — later determined to be Columbia University professor Dan Richman — detailing a conversation he had with President Donald Trump.
“I asked a friend of mine to share the content of the memo with a reporter,” Comey said. “I didn’t do it myself for a variety of reasons, but I asked him to, because I thought that might prompt the appointment of a special counsel.”
The former FBI director said he decided to leak the memos of his interactions with the president after Trump tweeted that he may have tapes of his conversations with Comey.
“My judgment was I needed to get that out into the public square,” Comey explained, “so I asked a friend of mine to share the content of the memo with a reporter.”
Lewandowski told Stephanopoulos that he believes Comey should be prosecuted if it is discovered that the ousted FBI chief leaked information more than once.
“He was the director of the FBI when these notes were taken and he’s turned them over to a law professor to ensure the New York Times got that information,” Lewandowski said. “And if that’s what he has done — if he continues to do this, if this is his pattern as the FBI director, he absolutely should have been fired.
“And if he is the chronic leaker, he should be potentially prosecuted for leaking the information,” he added.
Lewandowski’s comments come the same day it was reported that Trump’s personal lawyer, Marc Kasowitz, plans to file a complaint against Comey over his decision to leak the memos of his conversations with the president. In his statement Thursday, Trump’s lawyer claimed Comey “unilaterally and surreptitiously made unauthorized disclosures to the press of privileged communications with the president.”
Kasowitz said Comey’s leaking of his communications with Trump was “entirely retaliatory.”
As for why Trump decided to bring in a personal lawyer instead of using the White House counsel, Lewandowski told the ABC News host, “That’s what the Clintons did,” referring to lawyer Lanny Davis, who represented then-President Bill Clinton during his impeachment hearings in the late 1990s.