WASHINGTON — President Trump said on Friday that a new internal Justice Department report proved there had been F.B.I. bias against him ahead of the 2016 presidential election, citing “vicious” texts between investigators and findings that he said illustrated “criminal” behavior by the bureau’s former director.
In a wide-ranging interview on Friday morning with “Fox and Friends,” Mr. Trump said that he did not want to get involved in Justice Department matters but that what the former F.B.I. director James B. Comey had done “was a terrible thing to the people.”
“I would never want to get involved in that,” Mr. Trump said. “Certainly he, they just seem like criminal acts to me. What he did was criminal.” He added: “What he did was so bad in terms of our Constitution, in terms of the well-being of our country. What he did was horrible.”
Mr. Trump continued: “Should he be locked up? Let somebody make a determination.”
The inspector general report, released on Thursday, covered the F.B.I.’s handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server and was anxiously awaited by Mr. Trump. It concluded that Mr. Comey was insubordinate and broke with longstanding policy in his handling of the Clinton email investigation. But it found no evidence that Mr. Comey showed political bias in his oversight of the investigation. The report made no accusations of criminal wrongdoing.
“If you read the I.G. report, I’ve been totally exonerated,” Mr. Trump said, responding to questions from reporters later on Friday morning. The report did not examine or make any conclusions about the continuing special counsel investigation that is looking into Mr. Trump’s campaigns ties with Russia.
In his first public comments on the report, Mr. Trump said in a pair of tweets early Friday that he had done “a great service” for the American people by firing Mr. Comey last year.