Byron York: On James Comey and what the FBI thought about Michael Flynn
Did Comey tell lawmakers that? Here is the exchange between Comey and ABC’s George Stephanopoulos:
Comey’s statement directly contradicts this report, by me, from Feb. 12:
So who is right? There are a few things to note. One, in findings from the Russia investigation released in advance of its still-unreleased final report, Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee included this:
That seems to indicate a substantial misunderstanding, or just a straight-out conflict, between what the House concluded about the FBI agents who interviewed Flynn and what Comey says he told lawmakers.
How to clear things up? As it turns out, sources say the Comey-House Intel meeting at issue was transcribed. There is a word-for-word record of what Comey was asked and what he said. It seems reasonable to infer — can’t say anything definite yet, but infer — that Finding #22, quoted above, does not contradict what Comey said in the interview nor did lawmakers make up a finding out of whole cloth.
It is also reasonable to infer that the Republicans’ final report on the Trump-Russia investigation — it has long been finished but is still with the intelligence community, being cleared for classified information — might discuss its findings, including Finding #22, in greater length.
The bottom line is, it appears there will be an answer soon enough to the question about what Comey said in the ABC interview.