President Trump just fired FBI Director James Comey and little is certain except that the FBI director's future biographers have their work cut out.
Depending on the month and the year, Comey has incurred either the universal hatred or the begrudging admiration of the Left. Alternating roles, he's played both the villain and the victim. Luckily for the legacy of the lawman, Comey is going out on top.
While Trump fired the FBI director for allegedly "usurping" the attorney general with his decision not to prosecute Clinton, Comey was also removed during the middle of an ongoing investigation of Russia's electoral meddling. That makes him ready-made martyr material.
Already, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., has suggested that the firing was foul play. And on CNN, an incredulous Jeffery Toobin of the New Yorker slammed the dismissal as "a grotesque abuse of power by the president of the United States."
But this change of heart has nothing to do with principle. It's a product of political timing, as Erick Erickson explains. "The left wanted James Comey fired right up until Trump fired him," the conservative talk show host rightly observed. "Now they're screaming cover up." Any political observer more than six months old can corroborate that analysis.
For reopening the case into Hillary Clinton's email server just weeks before the election, he was labeled a veritable enemy of representative democracy.
"The election was rigged by James Comey," Paul Krugman thundered in the opinion pages of the New York Times. "Comey must be fired," demanded Jennifer Rubin over at the Washington Post. And Comey needs to "be barred from any form of public service," Kurt Eichenwald insisted in Vanity Fair.
As the Washington Examiner predicted almost exactly two months ago, those pundits now look silly in proportion to their degree of outrage. They once hated him and soon they will learn to love him.
Unfortunately for future students of history, that back and forth will likely make their head spin.
Philip Wegmann is a commentary writer for the Washington Examiner.