Seamus Bruner, Government Accountability Institute (GAI) researcher and author of Compromised: How Money and Politics Drive FBI Corruption, explained how former FBI Directors James Comey and Robert Mueller leveraged their government positions to enrich themselves. He joined Peter Schweizer, GAI president and Breitbart News senior editor-at-large, for a Wednesday interview with Sean Hannity.
“This is a familiar story [about] the revolving door; turning public service into self service,” said Bruner. “We followed the money. We followed it to the top, and we found that these choir boys or boy scouts — as the media likes to depict them — James Comey and Robert Mueller, they’re really no better than anyone else in the swamp. They use their public service [and] their contacts and they cash in through the revolving door.”
Bruner described Lockheed Martin’s — the country’s largest national defense and security contractor — hiring of James Comey in 2005 to the dual position of general counsel and senior vice president as unusual. Comey was 44 at the time and without requisite corporate experience.
Listen to the discussions below:
Bruner added, “[James Comey] wasn’t just consulting Lockheed Martin, he was their general counsel and a senior vice president at the corporation, which begs the question, why would you choose a young James Comey? He’s got no corporate experience of that kind.”
Bruner drew on a 2012 Huffington Post article describing Next Generation identification — a proposed biometric database and facial recognition system commissioned by the FBI via Lockheed Martin — as a “billion-dollar boondoggle.” He noted that Comey “signed off” on the project as a Lockheed Martin executive and chief legal counsel in 2012, and the project’s authorization by then FBI Director Robert Mueller.
Bruner spoke of Comey’s and Mueller’s complementary roles in expanding “the surveillance state.”
“James Comey and Robert Mueller have this long history together going back to the nineties at the DOJ,” recalled Bruner:
They’ve been very concerned with matters relating to surveillance, especially FISA and the Patriot Act. We see repeatedly throughout the early 2000s and all the way up through today [that] Robert Mueller and James Comey wanted to “tear down the wall,” so to speak, between intelligence agencies, and had issues with what they call “the going dark problem,” where they didn’t have enough information. So they really rapidly expanded [what I describe as] “the surveillance state” which is now, of course, being used against journalists, citizens, and even now a presidential candidate.
Schweizer explained how government officials leverage their roles towards self-enrichment: “What this highlights is this problem, happens at Health and Human Services, it happens at DoD, where you have government officials, who basically, while they’re in government, create demand for their own services when they leave.”
So in the case of Jim Comey, he goes to Lockheed Martin from the Department of Justice. At the Department of Justice, he helped establish some of these very programs that Lockheed Martin was getting contracts to implement and carry out. So he sets up these programs, who is Lockheed Martin going to look for to give a paycheck to who understands this program better than anybody else? The government official who helped put it together, and that is sort of a tried and true story in Washington, DC, and the point is, you played that clip at the beginning of James Comey talking about how sensitive he is to the appearances of doing something wrong or wrongdoing, the fact of the matter is, this is a very familiar story, unfortunately, in the swamp.
Schweizer concluded, “What Seamus shows is this pattern where, when Mueller is in the private sector and Comey is in government, there seem to be contracts and resources that flow in that direction, as well. It’s kind of a tag team arrangement that these two have. It speaks to the financial underbelly that exists even at the Department of Justice. … There are lots of ways in which these officials self-enrich themselves.”
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