Friday, 25 May, 2018

Ex-FBI chief Comey to testify in US Congress

Ex-FBI chief Comey to testify in US Congress Ex-FBI chief Comey to testify in US Congress
Christy Curtis | 26 May, 2017, 07:21

On Friday, the reportedNew York Times Trump told top Russian officials in the Oval Office that Comey was a "nut job" and terminating him had taken off the "great pressure because of Russia".

"Did he keep these memos?" Rubio asked. "There's no doubt that that's the questions that are going to get asked, and asked repeatedly".

The document given to NYT is based off of notes taken during the meeting, in which Trump spoke to Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, and Russian Ambassador to the US, Sergey Kislyak. House Democrats demanded an investigation into Trump immediately after the memo was released.

The week in a seemingly endless onslaught of news about chaos coming from within the White House shows no signs of slowing down.

Rosenstein, who on Wednesday appointed a special counsel to investigate possible Russia-Trump campaign coordination during the 2016 presidential campaign, made his appearances before Congress as Trump was preparing to leave for his first foreign trip as president.

The announcement that Mr Comey would testify followed disclosure by the Justice Department that Deputy Attorney-General Rod Rosenstein had talked with Attorney-General Jeff Sessions about replacing Mr Comey last winter, before either man had been confirmed for his post in the Trump administration.

That investigation includes examining whether there was any collusion between the campaigns and the Russian government. That was the White House's position initially after the deputy attorney general argued in a memo that Comey had erred in handling the FBI's investigation into Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton's private email server, even though Trump had praised Comey on the campaign trail past year.

A United States official briefed on the conversation said Trump was using "pressure" he faced from Comey as a negotiating ploy to win diplomatic gains from Lavrov on issues of dispute between Washington and Moscow - namely Syria and Ukraine.

White House national security adviser H.R. McMaster underscored that point in an interview that aired Sunday, saying Trump had felt "hamstrung". He was abruptly dismissed last Tuesday by the Republican president, who said the issue was Comey's inability to lead.

He will testify after the Memorial Day holiday, May 29, though a date has not yet been set. The California Democrat said public hearings should ferret out what has been a flurry of apparently contradictory comments by numerous parties involved. Tim Scott, R-S.C. "I do think that the special prosecutor provides a sense of calm and confidence perhaps for the American people, which is incredibly important". He goes on to add, "The investigation would have always continued, and obviously the termination of Comey would not have ended it". "If so, that borders on a very serious charge".

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