President Donald Trump has spent months blasting former FBI Director James Comey and special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.
But in a lengthy and wide-ranging interview with the conservative news outlet The Daily Caller, the president listed a brand-new grievance.
“I could give you 100 pictures of [Mueller] and Comey hugging and kissing each other,” Trump said in the interview, the full transcript of which was released on Wednesday. “You know, he’s Comey’s best friend.”
One hundred photos? That’s a lot of photos to have of two former FBI directors. Mueller and Comey do have a well-documented professional history together — and the president has complained about their friendship before. Vox decided to do a little digging through the wires to see if there was any photographic evidence to back up Trump’s allegation.
Long story short, we couldn’t find any — but we did find several incriminating photos of the two in the same general space, or looking at each other at press conferences.
Mueller and Comey worked together during the George W. Bush administration, while Mueller was serving as FBI director and Comey was serving as deputy attorney general. As Vox’s Alex Ward has previously written, the two bonded over their displeasure at how the Bush administration handled the war on terror. And Comey, of course, succeeded Mueller as FBI director.
Trump and his allies have cited Mueller and Comey’s past work together and perceived professional regard as evidence that the special counsel’s investigation is biased against the president and that Mueller can’t be impartial during the investigation, as it was the fallout from Comey’s firing that prompted the appointment of a special counsel.
But Trump’s 100 photos claim is, of course, just another attempt to undermine and muddy the special counsel’s investigation. Or maybe it’s possible Trump just got confused.