FBI

Obama's FBI Director Pick Almost Quit DOJ a Decade Ago Because of Electronic Eavesdropping

Said "I couldn't stay if the administration was going to engage in conduct that the Department of Justice had said had no legal basis"

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WASHINGTON, June 21 (UPI) — James Comey, who U.S. President Obama is to name as FBI director Friday, threatened a decade ago to quit the Justice Department over electronic eavesdropping.

The former George W. Bush administration deputy attorney general, along with FBI Director Robert Mueller — who Comey will replace if the Senate approves his nomination—both threatened to resign March 11, 2004, because of deep legal concerns about central aspects of the National Security Agency's domestic surveillance program, Comey confirmed to the Senate Judiciary Committee three years later.

"I couldn't stay if the administration was going to engage in conduct that the Department of Justice had said had no legal basis," he testified.