Former FBI Director James Comey was fired in spectacular fashion when he least expected it on Tuesday. Better late than never. He deserved it.

The optics of Comey’s plane taking off from Los Angeles and the speeding motorcade of black SUVs stalked by a swarm of buzzing cable news helicopters made for high drama and great television and Comey likes that, so the exit was fitting.

And the timing? Not a moment too soon. The day Comey was fired was the day that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein – who served in the Bush and Obama administrations with distinction and who was confirmed by the Senate two weeks ago on a 94-6 vote – recommended Comey should go because he violated FBI policies about disclosing details of investigations but also importantly because he is incapable of admitting he is ever wrong. Rosenstein made a convincing case that Comey’s power grab, blatant disregard of FBI protocols and grandiose moralizing made it impossible for him to lead the bureau. Did Trump jump on the Rosenstein memo and use it to his political advantage? Yes. Will Trump’s explanation change with the wind? Yes. Should Comey keep his job just because Trump got elected?

Regardless of Donald Trump’s motives, the decision to fire James Comey was the right decision. Comey is not indispensable to an impartial investigation of possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, and despite the rumor he “asked for more money” before being fired – asking for more money is what people who work in Washington do all the time. What FBI directors don’t do all the time is blurt out the details of ongoing investigations to the media, so Comey’s insistence on going rogue, live on national television, should not be his job security.

Comey’s not a whistleblower or a sacrificial lamb or a saint. His poor job performance is a substantial contributing factor why we have President Trump. The FBI’s investigation of Trump’s campaign is no excuse to keep Comey on the job he has failed to do. There is little evidence Comey is good at quietly investigating high-profile cases and making recommendations to the Justice Department for decisions about prosecution – which is precisely what we need in an investigation of the presidency.

No tears should be shed that Trump fired Comey. He should have been fired sooner. When Comey said no “reasonable prosecutor” would bring a criminal case against Hillary Clinton and editorialized, saying in his sanctimonious, unsolicited opinion she was “extremely careless,” he should have been fired. Commenting on an investigation and influencing an election is contrary to policy, and it was not his job as FBI director to go on television and announce a decision rightly belonging to the Justice Department or weigh in with his private opinions about the sloppiness of a candidate’s data management. His off-the-cuff comments were ambiguous, unprofessional and inconsistent with FBI protocol, and they undermined his boss, then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch.

Comey should have been fired when he upended the November election by announcing publicly 11 days beforehand his intention of reopening the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email, contrary to an FBI policy that does not disclose investigations or influence elections. As Rosenstein’s memorandum to Trump outlined, former FBI directors and high-level Justice Department professionals from both parties are unanimous in their opinion that Comey’s public statements 11 days before the 2016 election were extraordinary and inappropriate. Trump’s expedient use of Rosenstein’s conclusions does not make the conclusion less correct.

In March, when Comey announced on television he had no facts to support Trump’s spurious claims that the Obama administration wiretapped Trump Tower, and that the bureau was investigating possible collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians, he should have been fired. Was he trying to protect his own job? Was he trying to be bulletproof? I don’t care about his motivations, either. The American public doesn’t want or need showboats fanning flames of hysteria. We want people to do their job. Comey’s job was to investigate, not talk about investigations on television.

Comey is not fit to be FBI director, and there is nothing special that makes him a good candidate for a special counsel to the senate intelligence committee, either, Sen. Angus King’s late-night idea notwithstanding. There is nothing funny about a suggestion that the guy who the deputy attorney general says needs to go, threw the election for Clinton and got canned by Trump should be in charge of the allegedly unbiased investigation. Contrary to King’s assertion, Comey is not “of impeccable integrity.” Americans suffer enough TV drama queens. King’s joke on television was that, hey, why not Comey as special counsel? He’s a “free man” now. Get it?

Me neither.

It’s not funny that King wants Comey to continue to have a role in the investigation. It’s offensive to all the people who worked hard in the election for a fair result and, unlike Sen. King, don’t get to go on television to talk about their dreams.

Congress can’t appoint a special prosecutor unless it passes a law that says otherwise – and how realistic is that? Congress’s power resides in the confirmation of executive appointees. President Trump’s choice of FBI director will be another distraction from the work Americans want Washington to do. Senators will vote to confirm, or not, the nominee for FBI director and they can and should demand whatever characteristics and independence they would demand of a special prosecutor in the person chosen to lead the FBI.

Correction: This column was updated at 10:14 a.m. on May 14 to correct an inaccurate statement about Sen. King’s TV appearances.

Cynthia Dill is a civil rights lawyer and former state senator. She can be contacted at:

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Twitter: @dillesquire