Friday, 24 November, 2017

Comey: Trump administration spread 'lies, plain and simple'

President Trump’s statements to the former FBI director may or may not fall short of criminal conduct legal scholars say Comey to say Trump asked for loyalty, told him to let Flynn probe go
Kelley Robertson | 09 June, 2017, 02:42

Following a counter-terrorism briefing in the Oval Office on February 14, Trump allegedly told Comey, "I want to talk about Mike Flynn", who had resigned the day before.

Wednesday, a copy of former FBI Director James Comey's testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee was released. In his seven-page testimony, Comey wrote that he found Trump's intervention "very concerning", reported The Guardian.

Comey will also tell lawmakers that he informed Trump that he was not personally under investigation, validating the president's previous claims that he was not the target of the probe into his campaign's possible ties to Russian Federation.

"I felt compelled to document my first conversation with the President-elect", Comey said, saying he began to "type it on a laptop in an Federal Bureau of Investigation vehicle outside Trump Tower the moment I walked out of the meeting".

Analysts said Comey, an intensely by-the-book, non-political law enforcer whose handling of a separate investigation into Democrat Hillary Clinton a year ago nevertheless may have cost her the presidential election, was studiously avoiding accusing the president of a crime.

And Comey said he had so little faith in Trump's truthfulness that he felt compelled to document all of their conversations in writing, something he never did with Barack Obama and George W. Bush.

The top Democrat on the committee, Sen.

It was during that conversation that Comey said the president asked him what could be done to "lift the cloud" of investigation that was damaging his administration.

2. But is it obstruction of justice?

At the time he was sacked, Comey had been overseeing the investigation into possible coordination between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign for months. "He is eager to move forward with his agenda". Dianne Feinstein of California, who asked the question that many Republicans have raised in the weeks since Comey's firing as one media leak followed another revealing Comey's claims about Trump's inappropriate interactions with him.

"Grab your friends, grab a drink and let's COVFEFE!" the tavern said on Facebook, referring to a Trump tweet last week including the nonsensical word.

Kasowitz's statement did not address Comey's comments about Trump's pressuring him to shield Flynn from any FBI investigation. Trump's abrupt firing of Comey outraged Democrats, who believe he was improperly trying to halt a probe that has hung over his presidency since his first day in office.

But despite Mr Trump's attempts to fight back, Thursday is likely to be Comey's day, as he takes the opportunity to give his side of the story after his abrupt sacking by the president last month.

The hearing unfolded amid intense political interest, and within a remarkable political context as Comey delivered detrimental testimony about the president who fired him, a president who won election only after Comey damaged his opponent, Hillary Clinton, in the final days of the campaign.

"I don't think it's wrong to ask for loyalty from anybody in an administration", Burr said. Articles of impeachment would have to be passed by the House of Representatives, and most Republicans on Wednesday evening appeared to close ranks in support of Trump, despite the details of Comey's statement. If he tells a clear narrative that includes the commission of a real crime by the president or anyone else, Comey himself becomes complicit for not reporting it or at least resigning in public protest. He had called me at lunchtime that day and invited me to dinner that night, saying he was going to invite my whole family, but made a decision to have just me this time, with the whole family coming the next time.

The Justice Department then appointed another former FBI director, Robert Mueller, as special counsel in the investigation.

Trump is widely expected to use his Twitter account, which lists 31.8 million followers, to counterpunch at Comey on Thursday - perhaps even in real time.

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