Comey to testify before Senate committee on Russian Federation probe

Comey to testify before Senate committee on Russian Federation probe

Former FBI Director James Comey, who was sacked by President Donald Trump amid an agency probe into alleged Russian meddling in the USA election.

Mr Comey had been running an inquiry into possible collusion between Russian Federation and Donald Trump's election campaign.

"That's taken off." The president also reportedly said: "I'm not under investigation".

If we're parsing Trump's statements carefully, he still hasn't technically said something akin to 'I fired Comey because of the Russian Federation investigation.' He's said just about everything but that, mind you, but he hasn't quite said that.

Trump was using a negotiating tactic when he told Russian officials about the "great pressure" he was under, another USA official defended the president to the Times, suggesting that Trump's objective was to create a sense of obligation with Russian officials and to coax concessions on certain issues.

Rosenstein denied media reports from last week that Comey had asked him for additional resources for his investigation before Trump fired him. "He was insane, a real nut job", Trump has reportedly told Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Russian ambassador to the US Sergey Kislyak in the Oval Office on May 10, the day after he dismissed Comey, according to the document.

Spicer offered a new explanation for the firing, saying that Trump had been trying to improve relations with Russian Federation - and Comey got in the way.

White House officials have cited Rosenstein's memo as one of the main justifications for Trump's firing of Comey.

"Notwithstanding my personal affection for Director Comey, I thought it was appropriate to seek a new leader", Rosenstein said in prepared remarks for appearances before House and Senate lawmakers that were released Friday by the Justice Department.

As President Trump takes off today for his first worldwide trip as commander-in-chief, The New York Times and The Washington Post dropped two new reports on the ongoing investigation of possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation.

Trump, who on Friday left for his first foreign trip, has slammed the appointment of a special counsel as a politically motivated "witch hunt".

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During the meeting - in which Trump allegedly revealed classified information provided by Israel - the president reportedly said Comey's firing a day earlier had had relieved him of "great pressure" over his ties to Russian Federation.

At the time, the White House distributed the memo written by Rosenstein, which was dated May 9.

The White House has disputed Comey's account of his February conversation with Trump concerning Flynn but has not offered specifics.

"I wrote it. I believe it".

The Senate intelligence committee also asked acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe to turn over any notes Comey might have made regarding discussions he had with White House or Justice Department officials about Russia's efforts to influence the election.

Before the latest reports, the White House had hoped to shift attention away from the political firestorm in Washington to foreign policy as well as the president's ambitious pro-business economic agenda in Congress.

The appointment of Mueller as special counsel has drawn generally favorable comments from Democrats and from some Republicans as well.

"My memorandum is not a statement of reasons to justify a for-cause termination", he said.

As for the conversation with the Russians about Comey, Spicer essentially put the onus on the ex-FBI director.

Trump denied that charge at a press conference on Thursday. Officials said it had nothing to do with the Russian Federation investigation.

In his Congressional testimony, Rosenstein said that he strongly disagreed with a number of Comey's decisions regarding the investigation into former secretary of state Hillary Clinton's private email server.

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