J. Brien Comey, the father of ousted FBI Director James Comey, is speaking out about President Donald Trump, and he’s called the president “crazy as a hoot” and said he belongs in an institution.
That’s just for starters.
The elder Comey, 86, first spoke about Trump to a local newspaper, The Record, in New Jersey. He then repeated variations of the comments in an interview to CNN.
His comments are a stark contrast to his son, who has kept a stiff upper lip since Trump fired him in the midst of the investigation into Russia. The elder Comey has not minced words – to put it mildly.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. James Comey’s Father Thinks the President Is ‘Scared to Death’ of His Son
James Comey’s dad thinks he knows why Trump fired his son. He told CNN that he thinks Trump is “scared to death” of the former FBI director, who was leading the probe into whether Trump officials colluded with Russian interference into the 2016 presidential election.
Comey’s dad also told CNN that he thinks Trump fired his son because Comey “didn’t give him 100% loyalty, and he demands that of people who work with him. [Comey] said he would give 100% honesty, but not loyalty.”
The 86-year-old added for good measure, “Jim tells the truth, (while) Trump runs around lying most of the day.”
J. Brien Comey was married to his wife, Joan, for 55 years, according to Joan Comey’s obituary. The obit says the Comeys had four children together: Patricia, James Comey, Peter Comey, and Christopher Comey. According to her obit, Comey’s mom, “was the first woman underwriter for Mutual of New York Ins. She then became a substitute teacher in the Allendale School System, followed by her career in computer education with the Girl Scouts of America.” Joan Comey died at age 79 in 2012.
2. Comey’s Dad Thinks Trump Belongs In a Mental Institution & Should Be ‘Impeached Immediately’
How poorly does Comey’s dad regard the president? Well, the elder Comey thinks Trump belongs in an institution or, as he put it to CNN, a “home.”
“I’m convinced that he’s nuts. I thought he belonged in an institution. He was crazy before he became president. Now he’s really crazy,” J. Brien Comey told The Record.
To CNN, he said, “Oh my God, I think he should be impeached immediately — yesterday. He’s a very incompetent guy. He’s out of his league.” He added, “I think the man should be in a home quite honestly, he’s crazy as a hoot.”
J. Brien Comey told the media outlets that his son doesn’t talk to him about his job, so he had nothing to offer about the state of the Russia investigation.
For his part, Trump said he fired James Comey after he received a recommendation both from Attorney General Jeff Sessions and from Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein that Comey should be removed from office.
In President Trump’s letter to Comey, Trump says that Comey is “not able to effectively lead the Bureau.” You can read Trump’s letter here:
3. James Comey Has Said Little Since Being Fired & Comey’s Dad Has Been Praised for His Integrity
Unlike his dad, James Comey has held back publicly for now. Since being fired, Comey’s position has leaked out through a letter he wrote to staff, and through leaks to newspapers about memos he supposedly kept of conversations he had with Trump.
In his farewell letter, obtained by CNN, James Comey wrote that he had “long believed that a president can fire an FBI Director for any reason, or for no reason at all. I’m not going to spend time on the decision or the way it was executed. I hope you won’t either. It is done, and I will be fine, although I will miss you and the mission deeply.”
Now, though, Comey has agreed to publicly testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee some time after Memorial Day.
However, intemperate comments have leaked out on both sides. The New York Times has reported that Trump referred to James Comey as a “nutjob” to the Russians and previously alleged that James Comey had called Trump “crazy” before his firing and once tried to blend into blue curtains to avoid having to interact with the president.
A previous profile on James Comey by the Record reported that Allendale Mayor Vince Barra said both of Comey’s parents “were heavily engaged in the civic duties and were active at Guardian Angel Roman Catholic Church.”
The Record quoted Barra as saying of the parents, “They were involved in everything from Scouts to the church to … you name it. They were a huge part of Allendale. The parents had a strong sense of integrity, they were hardworking, and they believed in public service. That’s where James got it from. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.”
4. J. Brien Comey is a Republican Who Doesn’t Like Hillary Either & Was a Local Politician
It’s not that J. Brien Comey is a Hillary Clinton fan, though. He isn’t. He wouldn’t tell CNN whom he voted for, but did indicate he was a fan of Ohio Governor John Kasich, who also ran in the 2016 presidential primary.
According to The Record, J. Brien Comey is a “Republican and a former borough councilman.” Philly.com reported that J. Brien Comey voted a straight Republican ticket but not for Trump.
J. Brien Comey is a “retired real estate executive” who “was an Allendale councilman in the mid- and late-1980s,” reported The Record.
5. Comey’s Dad Still Lives in Comey’s Childhood Home
According to Philly.com, Comey’s father “still lives in the family house the FBI director grew up in” in New Jersey.
That home was the site of a tragedy in James Comey’s life. When he was 15, reports The Record, a man known as the “the Ramsey rapist” held Comey, then 15, and his younger brother “at gunpoint after breaking into their Allendale home on an October day in 1977.” They escaped through a bathroom window unharmed.