- The Washington Times - Friday, April 13, 2018

The White House is accusing the liberal media of “propping up” former FBI Director James Comey to sell his book that trashes President Trump, saying the media instead should boycott Mr. Comey as a “disgraced partisan hack” and liar.

“This is nothing more than a poorly executed PR stunt by Comey to desperately rehabilitate his tattered reputation and enrich his own bank account by peddling a book that belongs in the bargain bin of the fix-it section,” said White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.

Mr. Comey’s book, “A Higher Truth,” goes on sale Tuesday. The publisher has printed 850,000 copies.

The former FBI director is starting a media blitz this weekend, giving a five-hour interview to ABC News’ George Stephanopolous. He’s also scheduled to appear on CBS’ “60 Minutes” Sunday night.

The White House said the media shouldn’t help Mr. Comey peddle what it calls his lies.

“You guys spend hours upon hours every single day praising Jim Comey, propping him up, giving him the biggest platform,” Mrs. Sanders chided reporters. “We shouldn’t be praising him, we should be putting him down, we should be taking him off of air instead of giving him minute after minute.”

She said the media is lavishing Mr. Comey with coverage of his criticisms of Mr. Trump instead of reporting on stories that Americans care about.

“This country has a lot of real problems, we should be talking about the economy, we should talk about Syria, we should talk about the drug crisis,” she said. “But instead, we’re going to talk about Jim Comey. You guys will cover it endlessly all day today, all day tomorrow and my guess is every day next week, with very little time given to the issues that people care about. The president has every right to call out that individual that you guys are propping up.”

Mr. Trump fired Mr. Comey last year, saying he disapproved of the way Mr. Comey handled the FBI’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails during the presidential campaign of 2016. Since then, the two have engaged in an increasingly bitter war of words.

In his book, Mr. Comey writes that the president “invited me to dinner and decided my job security was on the menu” by demanding a loyalty pledge. He calls Mr. Trump “untethered to the truth” and describes him as sitting “on a throne” in the Oval Office, “separated from everyone who spoke to him by a large block of wood.”

Mrs. Sanders came to her press briefing Friday prepared with a list of put-downs aimed at Mr. Comey, obviously with the blessing of the president. They included:

— “The American people see right through the blatant lies of a self-admitted leaker.”

Mr. Comey “will be forever known as a disgraced partisan hack.”

— “One of the president’s greatest achievements will go down as firing Director James Comey.”

— “The guy’s known to be a liar and a leaker.”

— “Even Congresswoman Maxine Waters said Comey has no credibility.”

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