Former FBI director James Comey says he will push back on a subpoena to appear in a closed-door session before the House Judiciary Committee unless he is allowed to testify publicly, reports NPR. The committee, which subpoenaed former Attorney General Loretta Lynch, is looking into how the FBI handled the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s emails. “I’m still happy to sit in the light and answer all questions,” Comey tweeted. “But I will resist a ‘closed door’ thing because I’ve seen enough of their selective leaking and distortion … Let’s have a hearing and invite everyone to see,” he added.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) issued the subpoenas for Comey and Lynch. Comey would appear in private on Dec. 3 and Lynch on the following day. The Comey subpoena “represents an abuse of process, a divergence from House rules and its presumption of transparency,” said his lawyer, Daniel Richman. Comey, who oversaw an investigation of then-candidate Clinton’s use of a personal email account and a private server while she was secretary of state, was harshly critical of her behavior but concluded that it did not rise to the level of a prosecutable offense. Some Republicans argue that the Justice Department and the FBI conspired against candidate Trump, hoping to throw the election to Clinton. Democrats say the GOP hopes to use the issue to derail or discredit special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. “It is unfortunate that the outgoing Majority is resorting to these tactics,” said ranking Judiciary Committee member Jerrold Nadler (D-NY).