The former FBI director, James Comey, made his real Twitter debut Monday, complete with a new handle, new headshot, and an official admission that he'd been tweeting for a while now under a pseudonym, Reinhold Niebuhr .
Back in March, reporter Ashley Feinberg blew Comey's cover with her Gizmodo story, "This Is Almost Certainly James Comey’s Twitter Account." Indeed, it was, which Comey appeared to confirm with a meme not long after the post was published. He laid low under the Reinhold Niebuhr handle for quite some time (according to Feinberg's reporting, Comey wrote his senior thesis on Niebuhr, a theologian and ethicist) though he continued to sporadically tweet.
In fact, his recent use of Twitter has been cryptic enough to fuel speculation that he might be mulling a 2020 Presidential run.
Just last month, he tweeted a photo of himself standing in the middle of an Iowa road, wearing running shoes, which he captioned: “Goodbye Iowa. On the road home. Gotta get back to writing. Will try to tweet in useful ways.” He's also tweeted photos from West Point and Gettysburg in recent weeks.
But it wasn't until Monday that he invited himself into the Twitter fold with his first official tweet as @Comey.
Writing that he was "glad to be part of the Twitterverse," Comey also thanked his former handle's namesake for "the cover these last few years."
So, what have we learned from Comey's first day of official tweeting? He definitely follows the news, enjoys humor, and he hasn't turned his back on his old workplace. Among the 19 accounts he follows are CNN, Politico, the Associated Press, The Onion — and the FBI.
He also isn't afraid to poke fun of himself. Of the two tweets he has favorited is one that alludes to a rumor that the six-foot-eight-inch Comey once wore a dark blue suit in an effort to blend in with the curtains, so that Trump would not spot him and call him out.
Also, from the looks of his header image and a Nov. 2 tweet, Comey will be releasing a new book — A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies & Leadership — in Spring 2018. Considering Comey was, at the time President Trump fired him from his FBI director role, the top official leading a criminal investigation into whether Trump’s advisers colluded with the Russian government, the book will likely be a page-turner.
Comey is likely to use the book to address the role he played in the election of Trump to highest office in the land. Many have blamed Hillary Clinton's loss to the now-infamous "Comey letter," which came just days before the election and announced the FBI had “learned of the existence of emails that appear to be pertinent to the investigation” into the private email server that Clinton used while secretary of state. Some studies have suggested, however, that the letter only “led to a small drop in Clinton's lead” and did not “move the polls” in a statistically significant way.
During a May Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Comey said that he wouldn't change the decision to renewing the inquiry into Clinton's emails, but noted that it did make him "mildly nauseous" to think that he might have had an impact on the election.
Since the hearing, not much has been heard from Comey — certainly not in regards to the Russia investigation, in which he played such an important initial role. But despite being fired from the FBI, Comey hasn't remained entirely mum on the investigation.
On Oct. 30, the same day special counsel Robert Mueller filed his first charges in the investigation, Comey tweeted a quote from Nieburh: “Man’s capacity for justice makes democracy possible, but man’s inclination to injustice makes democracy necessary.”