The news that President Trump had fired FBI Director James Comey came so suddenly and so unexpectedly that Comey himself didn’t believe it at first.
Comey was in Los Angeles for a speaking engagement when the news broke. According to the New York Times, he thought it was a prank:
“Mr. Comey was addressing a group of F.B.I. employees in Los Angeles when a television in the background flashed the news that he had been fired.
“In response, Mr. Comey laughed, saying he thought it was a fairly funny prank.
“Then his staff started scurrying around in the background and told Mr. Comey that he should step into a nearby office… Shortly thereafter, a letter from Mr. Trump was delivered to the F.B.I.’s headquarters, just seven blocks from the White House.
The Times’s report is the latest piece of evidence that although Comey was, according to the Justice Department’s rationale, fired for something he did months ago, the decision itself happened so quickly that virtually no one had any warning.