Wednesday, 23 August, 2017

Trump 'ready to testify' over Comey conversations

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell R-Ky. flanked by Sen. John Barrasso R-Wyo. left and Majority Whip John Cornyn R-Texas speaks at the Capitol in Washington Tuesday Many in GOP unshaken by Comey's testimony against Trump
Roland Mccarthy | 17 June, 2017, 05:48

He branded the president a liar and said Trump urged him to abandon the investigation into the former national security adviser Michael Flynn, an allegation Trump has denied.

He also seized on Comey's revelation that he had directed a friend to release contents of memos he'd written documenting his conversations with the president to a reporter.

That's according to a person close to the legal team who agreed to speak ahead of the filing on condition that the person's name is not used.

A trio of Trump "formers" have always been on the radar of Hill investigators, but interest has lagged somewhat as more prominent figures like Kushner and Sessions have risen.

"I don't think it's for me to say" whether Trump committed obstruction, Comey demurred, "but that's a conclusion I'm sure the special counsel will work toward, to try and understand what the intention was there and whether that's an offense".

Former FBI director James Comey's scathing testimony has boosted the case for obstruction of justice charges against President Donald Trump, legal experts say. During his Congressional briefing organised by the powerful Senate Select Committee on Intelligence on Thursday, Comey confessed that he leaked the information about his interaction with the U.S. president.

Trump insisted Friday he didn't pressure Comey.

Pelosi is assessing the president this way: "I'm concerned about his fitness for office".

The House intelligence committee sent a letter Friday asking White House counsel Don McGahn whether any tape recordings or memos of Comey's conversations with the president exist now or had existed in the past.

Comey testified last week to the Intelligence committee. Susan Collins tells MSNBC's "Morning Joe" that she found him "credible, candid and thorough".

President Trump, however, refused to say whether his private conversations with Comey were taped. "No collusion, no obstruction, he's a leaker", Trump said.

Asked if he would make that denial under oath, he said: "100%". The other news was that the former Federal Bureau of Investigation director leaked a memo to the press, as if his altruistic reasoning makes him any different from Edward Snowden.

"It's my judgment that I was sacked because of the Russian Federation investigation", Mr Comey said towards the end of more than two hours of testimony before the Senate intelligence committee.

Former FBI director James B. Comey's blockbuster testimony was as conclusive as a stale hanging chad.

Trump made the remarks while responding to questions on Comey's explosive testimony in which he accused the president of trying to stop a probe into the alleged Russian interference in the USA elections a year ago.

President Donald Trump listens during a news conference with Romania's President Klaus Werner Iohannis in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, Friday, June 9, 2017.

He'll also be participating in an infrastructure event at the Department of Transportation and holding meetings with his Romanian counterpart before departing for New Jersey, where he'll spend the weekend at one if his properties. Comey also bluntly accused the White House of spreading "lies, plain and simple". He hinted that reporters would be "disappointed" in the answer.

He asserted that nothing in Mr Comey's testimony to the Senate pointed to collusion with Russian Federation or obstruction of justice.

Facing a Senate committee Thursday, Comey portrayed Trump as dismissive of the FBI's independence.

Comey, who was leading the FBI investigation into Russia's efforts to influence the 2016 election when Trump fired him last month, said in prepared remarks to the Senate intelligence committee Thursday that Trump told him in a one-on-one meeting in the Oval Office in February, "I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go".

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