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WHEN DOJ SAID GOODBYE TO COMEY To the editor: I am writing in response to your April 16 interview with Daniel Metcalfe, a former employee of the U.S. Department of Justice (“ Nothing Compares to the Past Two Years,” Page 17). In that interview Mr. Metcalfe claims that Attorney General Alberto Gonzales did not attend the August 2005 farewell party for former Deputy Attorney General James Comey. In judging Mr. Metcalfe’s credibility and the accuracy of his other assertions in the interview, your readers are entitled to know that this claim is flat-out false. The attorney general not only attended this farewell event in the Great Hall; he sat on the stage with the guest of honor, he spoke warmly of Jim in his remarks, and he presented Jim with the department’s prestigious Randolph Award in plain view of those in attendance at this “large farewell party.” It is also worth noting that, in the same interview, Mr. Metcalfe claims that Comey’s departure from the department was “quite abrupt.” In fact, Jim announced his resignation on April 20, 2005, and he did not leave the department until Aug. 15, 2005 — hardly “abrupt” by any reasonable standard. David Margolis Associate Deputy Attorney General U.S. Department of Justice Washington, D.C. Editor’s note: The Justice Department held two farewell events for the departing James Comey in August 2005 — one on Aug. 12 and another on Aug. 15. Daniel Metcalfe responds: The Justice Department questions my “credibility” and “accuracy” by challenging just two points, the first of which it claims “is flat-out false.” Quite to the contrary, the departmentwide farewell party for Jim Comey to which I referred did indeed take place without Gonzales present. It was held on Aug. 12, 2005, in the deputy attorney general’s large conference room; it involved formal presentations given by numerous attendees; and it even included an official DOJ seal that was signed by the signatory of the above letter. In fact, the “master of ceremonies” of this event was Chuck Rosenberg, who recently served as acting chief of staff for Gonzales. And as for the letter’s second claim, that Jim Comey’s departure was “hardly �abrupt,’ ” the fact of the matter is that he did not announce his actual departure date until shortly before he left, thus leaving Associate Attorney General Robert McCallum to wear a “ second hat” as acting deputy attorney general for several months.

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