The New York Times published new details Thursday night about the deterioration of the relationship between ousted FBI Director James Comey and Donald Trump, who tried to convince Comey multiple times to drop the federal investigation into his campaign's involvement with Russian Federation. Trump told NBC two days after firing Comey, however, that he meant to do it "regardless" of Rosenstein's recommendation.
Wittes claims that Comey repeatedly tried to "train" the Trump administration to only contact him through proper channels and said the White House was negligent about how involved a president should be in specific investigations.
Did he urge Comey at a February meeting to drop his probe of the Russian Federation connections of Trump's national security adviser, Michael Flynn? McCaskill thinks Mueller will be given significant space to investigate alleged ties to Russian Federation or obstruction of justice on the part of Trump.
It doesn't really leave his troubles behind, but Trump will at least have a change of scenery as he embarks on his first foreign trip as commander in chief on Friday.
Calls for a special investigation mounted after Mr Trump fired FBI Director James Comey last week.
"I can't confirm or deny the existence or non-existence of investigations or targets of investigations", Justice Department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores told the Post.
Former FBI Director Robert Mueller was appointed special counsel earlier this week to look into alleged Moscow meddling in the 2016 election, as well as potential collusion with Trump. Mueller, the special counsel, will provide those answers in the months or years to come. Unfortunately for Comey, Trump spotted him and called out to him.
Two unnamed White House officials confirmed the account to the Times, while a third government official said that the comments were a negotiating tactic used by Trump. "He was insane, a real nut job", Trump said, according to the Times report.
Missouri's U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill is being very vocal after a meeting with Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein yesterday.
"Comey was preoccupied throughout this period", Wittes wrote, "with the need to protect the Federal Bureau of Investigation from these inquiries on investigative matters from the White House". Officials said it had nothing to do with the Russian Federation investigation.
Rosenstein did not notify White House Counsel Donald McGahn of Mueller's appointment until Justice Department officials were already briefing reporters, the Post notes.
It's unclear how the White House believes Comey politicized the case, but he testified publicly that the probe was ongoing a week before he was sacked.
At his first news conference since April 12, standing alongside visiting Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, Trump denied there had been any collusion between himself, his campaign and Russian agents of influence. And special counsel investigations can begin with one issue and refocus on another, as was the case with the Whitewater investigation that ended up with Bill Clinton's impeachment after disclosures of his affair with Monica Lewinsky.
"If and when the Vatican is attacked by ISIS, which as everyone knows is Isis's ultimate trophy", Trump said, "the pope can have only wished and prayed that Donald Trump would have been president because this would not have happened". Trump once enjoyed the spectacle, but aides see the briefings as having diminishing returns, especially with a newly-named special counsel weighing statements and potentially examining contradictions.
Former FBI officials who worked under Mr. Mueller say members of Congress may have to adjust their expectations when it comes to the matter of public disclosures about the status of the investigation as it's in Mr. Mueller's nature to keep information about an ongoing probe held close to the chest.
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