James Comey to visit UConn on Oct. 15


WASHINGTON, DC – APRIL 30: Former FBI Director James Comey talks onstage at George Washington University April 30, 3018 in Washington, DC. Comey discussed his new book “Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies, and Leadership.” (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

James Comey, former FBI Director and author of a new book, will speak at the University of Connecticut on Monday, Oct. 15.

Comey was chosen as this year’s speaker for the Edward Fusco Contemporary Issues Forum. He will deliver remarks and participate in a question and answer session at the Jorgensen Center for the Performing Arts, UConn President Susan Herbst said in an email to the university community.

The Fusco Forum is an annual event funded through the private donations of the Fusco family, who established a fund specifically to allow the university to host high profile speakers, Herbst said in the email.

“Mr. Comey served as the Director of the FBI from 2013 through 2017,” Herbst said. “Earlier this year, he released a book about his life and career, ‘A Higher Loyalty- Truth, Lies and Leadership.’ Clearly, he has played a significant role in American public life in recent years.”

The event will be open to all UConn students, faculty and staff, and tickets will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis, according to Herbst. A separate communication on how to obtain tickets will be sent as the event gets closer.

Comey was the seventh FBI Director and served for almost four months of President Trump’s administration before Trump fired him on May 9, 2017.

Trump stated that he fired Comey due to Comey’s handling of the investigation into Secretary Hillary Clinton’s private email server, after receiving letters from Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein encouraging him to do so.

“I cannot defend the Director’s handling of the conclusion of the investigation of Secretary Clinton’s emails, and I do not understand his refusal to accept the nearly universal judgment that he was mistaken,” a letter from Rosenstein to Sessions reads. “Almost everyone agrees that the Director made serious mistakes; it is one of the few issues that unites people of diverse perspectives.”

However, in an interview with NBC News’ Lester Holt, Trump implied that his decision to fire Comey stemmed from Comey’s investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia.

“When I decided to (fire Comey), I said to myself, I said, ‘You know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story, it’s an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should have won,’” Trump said in the interview.

Comey will headline the seventh annual Fusco forum. Past speakers have included former Secretary Clinton and Senators Tom Daschle and Trent Lott.

Gabriella DeBenedictis is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at gabriella.debenedictis@uconn.edu.

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