(RNN) – President Donald Trump has fired FBI Director James Comey, the White House has announced.
"The president has accepted the recommendation of the Attorney General and the deputy Attorney General regarding the dismissal of the director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation," Sean Spicer told reporters in the briefing room on Tuesday.
“The FBI is one of our Nation’s most cherished and respected institutions and today will mark a new beginning for our crown jewel of law enforcement,” President Trump said in a statement. A search for a new permanent FBI director will begin immediately, it added.
After J. Edgar Hoover’s 48-year tenure as FBI director, the position is now a 10-year term, appointed by the president and confirmed by Senate.
The only other FBI director to be fired was William S. Sessions, who was appointed by Ronald Reagan during the Iran Contra affair, and asked by Bill Clinton and Attorney General Janet Reno to resign.
— Sean Spicer (@PressSec) May 9, 2017
According to the Associated Press, Comey sent a letter to Congress on Tuesday correcting his testimony on Huma Abedin’s emails. Abedin was a top aide to Hillary Clinton.
The letter said Comey testified that Abedin had forwarded “hundreds and thousands” of emails to the laptop of her then-husband former Rep. Anthony Weiner.
The corrected testimony said that only a small number of emails on the laptop were a result of forwarding. The rest occurred as backup from other devices, the AP reports.
He was responsible for overseeing the FBI’s investigation of the Hillary Clinton email controversy during the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
His decisions during the election are regarded by many analysts to have cost Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton the election.
President Barack Obama appointed Comey to the position of FBI director in September 2013. Before this, Comey was senior vice president for Lockheed Martin.
Comey also served as the United States deputy attorney general from 2003 to 2005.
Comey and his wife, Patrice Failor, are the parents of five children.
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