Comey writes in memo he laughed after Trump floated the idea of jailing journalists

James Comey, the former FBI director, said he laughed when President Donald Trump's suggested he might have to jail j...

Posted: Apr 20, 2018 4:47 PM
Updated: Apr 20, 2018 4:47 PM

James Comey, the former FBI director, said he laughed when President Donald Trump's suggested he might have to jail journalists to send a message about unauthorized leaks, a memo Comey wrote, which was obtained by CNN and other news outlets on Thursday, revealed.

In a memo dated February 14, 2017, Comey said that Trump complained during an Oval Office meeting about classified information being leaked to the media. Comey wrote that he said he "agreed very much" that it was "terrible" such information was being leaked, and added that he was "eager to find leakers and would like to nail one to the door as a message."

Related: Read the James Comey memos

Toward the end of their meeting, Comey said that Trump "wrapped up" the conversation "by returning to the issue of finding leakers."

"I said something about the value of putting a head on a pike as a message," Comey wrote in the memo. "[Trump] replied by saying it may involve putting reporters in jail. 'They spend a couple days in jail, make a new friend, and they are ready to talk.'"

Comey continued, "I laughed as I walked to the door Reince Priebus had opened."

The memos kept by Comey documenting his interactions with Trump are rigorous in detail and portray the president in deeply unflattering terms. Much of the information contained in the memos was already public prior to Thursday's release, but the documents are nevertheless striking to read in their entirety.

Neither a representative for Comey nor the White House immediately responded to a request for comment Friday morning.

It's unclear what the president meant when he said that after jailed journalists "make a new friend" they'd be willing to talk.

Since announcing his bid for the presidency in the summer of 2015, Trump has made his disdain for journalists known, regularly attacking reporters and news organizations that publish stories critical of him. The president has also been engrossed with learning the identities of those who have leaked to the press, publicly calling on the Department of Justice to "take action" against individuals who have done so.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 62993

Reported Deaths: 1731
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hennepin19873842
Ramsey7827270
Dakota4610106
Anoka3841115
Stearns292820
Washington222748
Olmsted179123
Nobles17777
Scott163422
Mower11112
Rice10468
Blue Earth9465
Wright9185
Carver8993
Clay79440
Sherburne75310
Kandiyohi7141
St. Louis62120
Todd4302
Lyon4263
Watonwan3671
Freeborn3611
Nicollet35613
Steele3562
Benton3253
Winona26616
Beltrami2640
Crow Wing25214
Le Sueur2301
McLeod2240
Martin2105
Chisago2091
Goodhue2059
Otter Tail2044
Cottonwood1780
Becker1621
Pipestone1589
Polk1564
Waseca1561
Carlton1470
Itasca14612
Douglas1442
Isanti1370
Unassigned13546
Dodge1310
Pine1290
Murray1251
Chippewa1171
Morrison941
Wabasha930
Brown922
Faribault920
Meeker872
Rock860
Sibley862
Koochiching833
Cass802
Jackson790
Pennington751
Mille Lacs733
Fillmore720
Renville675
Lincoln610
Grant563
Swift561
Roseau530
Yellow Medicine530
Pope480
Houston450
Aitkin411
Norman400
Kanabec372
Redwood370
Hubbard360
Wilkin353
Marshall290
Wadena280
Mahnomen271
Big Stone250
Red Lake240
Lake220
Stevens180
Clearwater140
Traverse130
Lac qui Parle80
Cook50
Lake of the Woods40
Kittson30

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 50230

Reported Deaths: 955
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Polk10612210
Woodbury377052
Black Hawk320066
Linn245689
Johnson213820
Dallas193235
Buena Vista180012
Scott176815
Dubuque173431
Marshall145627
Pottawattamie136729
Story118915
Wapello93435
Muscatine86048
Webster8498
Crawford7393
Cerro Gordo65617
Sioux6533
Warren5861
Tama55729
Jasper48427
Wright4821
Plymouth47912
Clinton4344
Dickinson3844
Louisa37814
Washington30510
Boone2723
Franklin25512
Hamilton2551
Bremer2337
Clarke2063
Clay2021
Carroll2012
Des Moines1992
Emmet1934
Shelby1881
Hardin1860
Marion1830
Floyd1673
Benton1621
Jackson1601
Poweshiek1608
Allamakee1584
Mahaska14217
Henry1404
Guthrie1385
Buchanan1351
Cedar1351
Jones1352
Butler1312
Lee1294
Madison1282
Hancock1242
Humboldt1241
Delaware1231
Lyon1232
Pocahontas1212
Harrison1131
Cherokee1101
Clayton1093
Winneshiek1021
Page1000
Taylor1000
Iowa981
Kossuth970
Mills941
Monona920
Winnebago920
Palo Alto910
Fayette900
Calhoun872
Cass871
Jefferson870
Sac860
Osceola850
Grundy831
Union811
Mitchell800
Monroe758
Lucas734
Worth680
Davis612
Montgomery614
Chickasaw600
Appanoose523
Howard510
Fremont450
Greene420
Keokuk401
Adair380
Van Buren381
Ida330
Audubon291
Decatur270
Ringgold231
Wayne211
Adams170
Unassigned20
Rochester
Broken Clouds
82° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 55°
Feels Like: 86°
Mason City
Broken Clouds
83° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 56°
Feels Like: 88°
Albert Lea
Scattered Clouds
81° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 55°
Feels Like: 85°
Austin
Scattered Clouds
82° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 56°
Feels Like: 88°
Charles City
Few Clouds
81° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 58°
Feels Like: 85°
Sever storm chances return for Friday night
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Latest Video

Image

Sean's Weather 8/14

Image

Car thefts on the rise in Rochester

Image

Rochester Repertory Theatre Company hosting drive in theater

Image

NSIC suspends athletic competitions through the end of the year

Image

IGCA releases all-state honorees

Image

Former Austin Bruin lands on pro roster

Image

Constituents come out to hear VP Pence

Image

Sara's 10pm Forecast - Thursday

Image

Rochester Civic Theatre Unveils New Production

Image

Addressing Diversity in City Government

Community Events