[Ads-l] King and Comey: "Will no one rid me of this meddlesome priest?"

Dave Wilton dave at WILTON.NET
Fri Jun 9 21:17:39 EDT 2017


It's pretty clear that King had the allusion prepared. He cited the date of Becket's death, and that's just not something people know off the top of their heads. 

But Comey's allusion seems to have been off the cuff.

The Becket allusion has been made numerous times since Comey's firing. Yesterday's testimony was far from the first. Examples: 

www.cnbc.com/2017/05/10/comey-deserved-to-be-fired-commentary.html

https://twitter.com/NekulturnyTrump/status/864697937493803008

https://twitter.com/SJMorganstein/status/862301468929527808



-----Original Message-----
From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of Ben Zimmer
Sent: Friday, June 09, 2017 7:12 PM
To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
Subject: Re: [ADS-L] King and Comey: "Will no one rid me of this meddlesome priest?"

There's no such allusion in Comey's prepared remarks (which he didn't read from at the session anyway). I highly doubt there was any collusion on the allusion -- just "thinking along the same lines."


On Fri, Jun 9, 2017 at 7:57 PM, Joel Berson <berson at att.net> wrote:

> According to the Washington Post:
> “You said [Trump] said, ‘I hope you will hold back on that.’ But when 
> a president of the United States in the Oval Office says something 
> like ‘I hope’ or ‘I suggest’ or ‘would you,’ do you take that as a directive?”
>  Comey replied: “Yes. Yes, it rings in my ear as kind of, ‘Will no one 
> rid me of this meddlesome priest?’ ”
>  King said: “I was just going to quote that in 1170 [of] Dec. 29 Henry 
> II said, ‘Who will rid me of this meddlesome priest?’ And then the 
> next day he was killed. Thomas A Becket. That’s exactly the same 
> situation. We’re thinking along the same lines.”
>
>  Did Senator King (whose questioning was remarkably to the point and
> eliciting) and Comey consult so that King was prepared to allude to 
> this quotation and Comey to cite it?  Or is it in Comey's prepared 
> remarks, which King had seen before the committee session?
>
>
>

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