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Trump's firing of Comey lengthens shadow hanging over presidency

18 Mai 2017

The New York Times is also reporting that the president asked Mr Comey for a pledge of loyalty - and he said no.

"President Trump should release the tapes he referred to and come clean on the real reasons why Director Comey was abruptly fired in the midst of a critical investigation", said Congressman Joe Crowley, House Democratic Caucus chairman.

It can be granted the President is not threatening Mr. Comey to stop him from testifying in a congressional proceeding, to investigators, or to a grand jury. He also, like Nixon, has grown increasingly isolated in the White House, recently relying on only a small circle of family members and loyal advisers while livid about the West Wing's failing efforts to get ahead of the damaging Russian Federation story, according to several people close to Trump. They also commented only condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.

The president's threat came in a series of frustrated morning tweets that called the Russian Federation investigations a witch-hunt, threatened to cancel White House press briefings, accused the media of conveying fake news and lamenting that people were making a big deal out of the occasional erroneous statement from his staff.

Mr Trump has said that Mr Comey has told him three times that he was not a target of the FBI inquiry, comments that have raised accusations among opponents that the president was interfering in the investigation.

And at his NY office during the campaign, workers believed Trump had a system set up to record phone calls.

The other rationale for Comey's firing - it was in the president's letter to Comey - restoring trust and confidence in the FBI, but that was directly countered yesterday by acting FBI Chief Andrew McCabe.

Trump said in an NBC interview on Thursday that he had planned to fire Comey, regardless of what recommendations he received from the Justice Department - an account that differs from an earlier White House statement announcing that Trump acted "on the clear recommendations of both Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and Attorney General Jeff Sessions". "I think sometimes we don't have an opportunity to get in to see him and get his full thinking".

Trump and Comey's relationship was strained early on, in part because of the president's explosive and unsubstantiated claims that Barack Obama wiretapped Trump Tower. Trump, meanwhile, takes a different view, tweeting that Comey "gave her a free pass for many bad deeds!" On Friday, Trump threatened to do the leaking.

Describing himself as a very active President, Trump explained that at time it become very hard for his surrogates to explain things with ideal accuracy to reporters at the news conference.

"The lesson for presidents since Nixon was, do not tape your Oval Office conversations", said Timothy Naftali, a professor at New York University and the first federal director of the Richard Nixon Presidential Library in Yorba Linda, California.

Trump said the candidates were "outstanding people" and "very well known". It initially cited a Justice Department memo criticizing Comey's handling of last year's investigation into Hillary Clinton's emails as the impetus, only to have that version undercut by Trump himself. "But I think that there are times when you, more than not, read a story where someone's trying to - trying to pull apart one word, one sentence and say, 'Aha!' and make it a gotcha thing".

Trump tweeted Friday that his staff can't be expected to be "perfectly accurate" in the briefing room, and mused about canceling press briefings altogether. You want to create this false narrative. A former federal prosecutor and state attorney, Gowdy was elected to Congress in the 2010 tea party wave and has focused on law enforcement issues. John Cornyn of Texas, the No. 2 Senate leader and a former state attorney general.

Trump's firing of Comey lengthens shadow hanging over presidency