Read The Full Transcript From James Comey's ABC Interview

“That makes no sense at all,” Mr. Comey recalled in the Sunday interview of his reaction to the news of his firing last May.

“I thought, ‘It’s crazy to fire me.’ I’m leading the investigation of Russian influence.”

When he saw news the same week that Mr. Trump had met with Russian officials in the Oval Office and called Mr. Comey a “nut job,” Mr. Comey said he saw right through it.

“Wow, was my reaction,” he said. “First of all, what are the Russians doing in the Oval Office? One, as a counterintelligence person, I’m thinking, ‘That’s crazy,’ without any Americans being present, one. And, two, the pretense is melting away.”

He said firing Robert Mueller would be “the most serious attack yet on the rule of law.”

Mr. Stephanopoulos asked Mr. Comey what he would think if Mr. Trump were to fire the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III.

“It would I hope set off alarm bells that this is his most serious attack yet on the rule of law,” Mr. Comey said. “That is higher than all the normal fights about policy.”

Toward the end of Sunday’s broadcast, Mr. Stephanopoulos said it was stunning that Mr. Comey could not rule out the possibility that Russia has compromising material on the president.

“It is stunning, and I wish I wasn’t saying it, but it’s just, it’s the truth,” Mr. Comey said.

He stands by his handling of the F.B.I.’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server.

Mr. Comey used several portions of the interview to defend his decisions about revealing the closing and reopening of the F.B.I.’s investigation into Mrs. Clinton’s use of a private email server.

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