White House Spokeswoman Backs President Trump's Claim about Comey

Saturday, 13 May, 2017

But questions about Russian Federation, the ongoing FBI investigation and Comey's dismissal largely dominated the hearing.

The assessment comes amid a mushrooming crisis for the Trump team as questions swirl over why the president fired his FBI director, who was overseeing an investigation into Russian election meddling and possible connections between Trump campaign associates and Russia previous year.

"He's a showboat. He's a grandstander". "The FBI has been in turmoil".

Blumenthal followed, "But as a former prosecutor, you know that when there is an investigation into several potentially culpable individuals, the evidence from those individuals and can lead to others, correct?"

At a hearing on Thursday, the Republican chairman of the panel, Richard Burr, and the top Democrat, Mark Warner, praised Comey.

Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee are calling for immediate hearings on President Trump's decision to fire FBI Director James Comey.

"Regardless of the recommendation I was going to fire Comey", Trump told NBC's Lester Holt, in his first televised interview since suddenly axing Comey late Tuesday.

Trump's claim contradicts the initial version of events presented by the White House - including Vice President Mike Pence.

The hearing was supposed to have been one at which Comey appeared with other top USA intelligence officials to discuss threats to the United States across the globe.

That might include businesses associated with Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, who is also a top White House aide, the paper quoted one source.

MCCABE: It is my opinion and belief the FBI will continue to pursue this investigation vigorously and completely.

In the broader context, I wonder how many more enemies Trump intends to make as his presidency progresses. Asked by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) whether he would "refrain" from providing "updates to the president or anyone else in the White House on the status of the" Russian Federation probe, McCabe said unequivocally, "I will". "I'm not talking about campaigns".

His explanation of why he fired Comey ran counter to previous administration explanations of Comey's dismissal. The reasoning the White House officially gave then - in writing - was Comey's handling of the Clinton email investigation, based on a review by the deputy attorney general, Rod Rosenstein. I was going to fire Comey.

Trump had kept his decision to fire Comey from all but his closest advisers.

"There's been a long list of reasons that Director Comey isn't there", she said. Schumer said he hoped that Sessions would also speak to senators separately on the firing of Comey.

But McCabe characterized the investigation as "highly significant" and assured senators Comey's firing would not hinder it.

In his interview with NBC, Trump also described the three instances in which he had asked Comey if he was under investigation by the federal agency.

Democrats have ramped up calls for an independent investigation into the Russian Federation issue, and some Republicans in Congress have also said they were concerned about the timing of the move.

But as an empty, unserious man who thinks only of himself and knows only how to deride opponents, Trump began a series of Wednesday tweets at 7:10 a.m. with a puerile assault on Democrats who now "play so sad" over Comey's firing. "We had a very nice dinner". He acknowledged that he had directly asked the F.B.I. director if he was being investigated.

In one of the more dramatic exchanges, he was asked whether the investigation was - as White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders maintained Wednesday - a small investigation in relation to the other work the FBI is conducting. Susan Collins, R-Maine, that it was not standard FBI practice to notify someone if they are not under investigation.

Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle fear that the bureau's probe - which, unlike the committee's, could produce criminal charges - may be upended now that Comey is gone, and they probably will press McCabe for a status update.