Trump Says 'Fast Decision' Likely on FBI Comey Replacement

  • Pick possible before president leaves for first foreign trip
  • Furor followed Comey firing amid FBI’s Russia investigation

Donald Trump said he expects to make a “fast decision” on a replacement for fired FBI Director James Comey, perhaps before he departs the U.S. on May 19 for his first foreign trip as president.

“Even that is possible,” Trump told reporters in a brief visit to the press cabin of Air Force One as he departed for Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, to deliver his first commencement address in office.

Trump fired Comey on May 9, citing frustrations with the FBI director’s conduct. The move prompted an uproar among Democrats and some Republicans because Comey’s agency is leading an investigation into whether there were connections between Russian interference in last year’s presidential election and people associated with Trump’s campaign. Trump has said that wasn’t the reason for his decision.

Trump said the candidates under consideration to lead the FBI -- White House officials have identified 11 of them so far -- are “outstanding people.” He said most are “very well known” and of the “highest level.”

Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein plan to interview four candidates on Saturday for a nominee that Trump will send to the Senate. The initial contenders they will see are acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, Texas Republican Senator John Cornyn, former Justice Department official Alice Fisher and Michael Garcia, a former U.S. Attorney in Manhattan, according to a person familiar with the matter.

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