President Donald Trump will keep James Comey on as the FBI director, according to several reports on Tuesday, citing people familiar with the matter.
The sources told The New York Times and CNN that Comey, who had a seemingly outsized role during the 2016 campaign, had no intention of resigning following Trump’s win. He was also not expected to leave at the end of former President Barack Obama’s tenure.
Comey told top FBI officials that Trump asked him to stay on as head of the agency, ABC News reported. The outlet reported that Trump had no comment on the report on Tuesday.
Comey’s tenure is slated to end in 2023, as FBI directors have 10-year terms.
In the days leading up to the election, Comey sent a letter to Congress, detailing that his agency found emails on a laptop shared by Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin and her husband, Anthony Weiner. He said the emails might be pertinent to an investigation into Clinton’s private email server.
Three days before Election Day, however, Comey said that the FBI would not pursue new charges against Clinton, while describing her actions as “extremely careless.” Democratic critics have said his letter helped sway the election in favor of Trump.
“Because of our rigged system that holds the American people to one standard and people like Hillary Clinton to another, it does not look like she will be facing the criminal charges that she deserves,” Trump said in a statement after Comey’s decision.
At the same time, during the election, Trump slammed the FBI and the Department of Justice for not criminally charging Clinton over the email server.
Over the weekend, Trump and Comey appeared to have buried the hatchet, with the two meeting in the White House and Trump acknowledging his status.
“He’s become more famous than me,” Trump said of Comey, laughing.