US Politics

Sacked FBI director's advice for Australia in Trump era


James Comey has told Australia to stick with the US while Donald Trump is at the helm.

Fired FBI chief James Comey has urged Australia to maintain a close relationship with the US during the presidency of Donald Trump.

Mr Comey appeared on ABC's 7:30 program on Thursday to discuss his time as FBI director and his firing by Mr Trump, a man he has since called "morally unfit" to be president.

When asked if Australia can continue to view the US as a reliable, trustworthy and credible partner with Mr Trump in charge, Mr Comey was resolute.

"Yes. And just because I know the extent and culture of the relationship between the two countries, I know it through the national security lens and law enforcement lens," he said.

"It would be hard to screw up the relationship between the US and Australia. And no one president has enough time to screw it up, because it's so longstanding and so beneficial to both sides."

Mr Comey - who reopened the case of Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server in the crucial final days of the 2016 election - said he hoped he played no role in Mr Trump becoming president.

"The notion we had an impact on the election makes me sick to my stomach," he said.

"That's not a commentary on Trump, although I meant (what I said about him). What I love about the Justice Department and the FBI, is that we're not involved in politics."

During the interview, he refused to say if it was Alexander Downer who warned him about Russian meddling in the US election.

Mr Comey is currently promoting his new book "A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies and Leadership."

His memoir alternates between philosophical musings and advice on the issue of leadership - insisting on the need for honesty and transparency in public life.

The former FBI chief condemns Mr Trump as having brought to the US capital never-before-seen values in a US president, running the White House like a Mafia don.

"This president is unethical, and untethered to truth and institutional values," he writes. "What is happening now is not normal."

Additional reporting: AAP

Stay up to date with SBS NEWS

  • App
  • Subscribe
  • Follow
  • Listen
  • Watch