Two top advisers to former FBI Director James Comey, James Baker and Lisa Page, have resigned from the Bureau.
Baker was one of Comey’s closest confidants. He served as the FBI’s top lawyer until last year when he was reassigned. That reassignment came as new FBI Director Christopher Wray began designating his own people for top roles.
Baker was notably investigated by the Department of Justice for sharing classified information with reporters although he was not charged.
Page was best known for exchanging text messages disparaging then-candidate Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential election with another FBI agent, Peter Strzok. In one message, Strzok tells Page, Trump is “an idiot” while in another Page tells Strzok Trump is a “loathsome human.” In yet another, Strzok writes that Hillary Clinton should win the election 100 million votes to zero. Page responds, “I know.”
Congressional Republicans seized on the messages claiming they revealed an anti-Trump bias at the FBI. Both Page and Strzok had served on special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian meddling, possibly with the Trump campaign.
James Comey tweeted in support of Baker when his resignation was announced. “A great public servant retired from the FBI today. Jim Baker’s integrity and commitment to the rule of law have benefitted our country through 5 presidents, of both parties. We are fortunate he and so many others choose to devote their lives to justice,” he wrote.
Baker told The New York Times that he would be joining the Brookings Institution, as a writer for its Lawfare blog, which focuses on national security. It is not yet known what Lisa Page’s next move will be.
The two resignations at this point do not seem to be related.
Photo by I, Aude via Wikimedia Commons