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James Comey. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Former FBI Director James Comey pushed back Tuesday night against Attorney General William Barr's decision to not pursue obstruction charges against President Trump, which Barr made clear in his explanatory letter on Robert Muller's final report, per NBC.

"The notion that obstruction cases are somehow undermined by the absence of proof of an underlying crime, that is not my experience in 40 years of doing this nor is it the Department of Justice's tradition. Obstruction crimes matter without regard to what you prove about the underlying crime."
— James Comey, speaking in Charlotte, North Carolina

More from Comey, per ABC:

  • "I can't quite understand what's going on with the obstruction stuff. ... I have great faith in Bob Mueller, but I just can't tell from the letter why didn't he decide these questions when the entire rationale for a special counsel is to make sure the politicals aren’t making the key charging decisions."

Comey wrote in a NYT op-ed last Thursday that he doesn't care about Muller's conclusion on whether Trump conspired with Russia in the 2016 election or obstructed justice — he believes Trump is unfit for the presidency either way. Comey supervised the start of the special counsel's Russia probe before being fired by Trump in 2017.

What's next: Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), said on Sunday he plans to question Comey after the release of Mueller's report.

Go deeper ... Trump: "It wouldn't bother me at all" to release full Mueller report

Go deeper

McCarthy jokes about hitting Pelosi with gavel if he becomes Speaker, in new audio

Kevin McCarthy. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) can be heard saying "it would be hard not to hit" House Speaker Nancy Pelosi with the speaker's gavel if Republicans retake the House in 2022 and he becomes speaker, according to new audio posted to Twitter by a Main Street Nashville reporter.

Driving the news: McCarthy made the comments during a fundraising event in Tennessee, as he was handed an oversized gavel by members of the Tennessee congressional delegation, reports CNN.

Updated 2 hours ago - World

U.S. and U.K. blame Iran for drone strike on oil tanker

Britain's Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab. Photo: Sameer Al-DOUMY / AFP

Secretary of State Antony Blinken and British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said on Sunday that the United States and United Kingdom, respectively, now believe Iran was likely responsible for last week's drone strike on an oil tanker in the Arabian sea.

Why it matters: The United States and Britain now join Israel in accusing Tehran of being behind the July 29 attack off the coast of Oman. Iran has denied involvement.

8 hours ago - Sports

Suni Lee wins bronze medal in uneven bars

Photo: Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

U.S. gymnast Sunisa "Suni" Lee won her 3rd Olympic medal on Sunday, taking home bronze in the individual uneven bars event.

Driving the news: Also on Sunday, U.S. gymnast MyKayla Skinner won the silver medal in the vault on Sunday after stepping in for Simone Biles, who withdrew from the event to prioritize her mental health and well-being.