clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Trump had an unhinged early morning tweetstorm after firing Comey

He mocked critics and called for the investigation of a Democratic senator.

Cheriss May/NurPhoto via Getty
Andrew Prokop is a senior politics correspondent at Vox, covering the White House, elections, and political scandals and investigations. He’s worked at Vox since the site’s launch in 2014, and before that, he worked as a research assistant at the New Yorker’s Washington, DC, bureau.

President Donald Trump has responded to the firestorm over his dismissal of FBI Director James Comey with a series of angry tweets attacking both Comey and Democratic critics.

The president started off with a sneak preview last night, when he insulted “Cryin’ Chuck Schumer” and suggested Schumer was a hypocrite to oppose Comey’s firing. (The moniker is a reference to when Schumer publicly teared up while criticizing Trump’s immigration and travel order back in January.)

This morning, Trump picked up where he left off, in an attempt to portray criticism of his dismissal of Comey as mere partisan hackery from Democrats (even though several congressional Republicans have criticized the move too):

But even though Democrats have been harshly critical of Comey’s behavior in the Hillary Clinton email investigation, relatively few called for his actual firing — an act with little modern precedent. And for the most part, Democrats preferred Comey in the job investigating potential Trump associates’ and campaign ties to Russia rather than a replacement who would be hand-picked by the president.

Trump soon followed this up by attacking Comey himself, claiming his successor would “do a far better job”:

After this, Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) appeared on CNN and said Trump’s actions present “a looming constitutional crisis that is deadly serious.” In an apparent response to these comments, the president of the United States lashed out at Blumenthal, called for an investigation into him, and mocked him for supposedly crying “like a baby”:

In 2010, Blumenthal came under criticism for a pattern of using ambiguous language that could leave the impression he served in Vietnam when he did not, and in one case an outright false statement that he served there. He apologized and said that in that one statement, he misspoke.

But it’s quite a stretch for Trump to call this “one of the greatest military frauds in U.S. history,” and even more of a stretch to say that Blumenthal (rather than, say, Trump associates’ ties to Russia) “should be the one who is investigated.” As political scientist Brendan Nyhan asks on Twitter, “What would you say if you saw this in another country?”

Sign up for the newsletter Today, Explained

Understand the world with a daily explainer plus the most compelling stories of the day.