Published: Fri, May 19, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

Trump Denies Pressuring Comey to End Flynn Probe

Trump Denies Pressuring Comey to End Flynn Probe

Asked if he urged Comey to drop the investigation of former national security adviser Michael Flynn - something a Comey associate claims happened based on extemporaneous notes kept by Comey at the time - Trump answered: "No. No".

It seemed like he was running scared, but in his press conference, he backtracked from his previous comments and said he was "fine with whatever people want to do", in regards to the special counsel investigation.

President Donald Trump lashed out on Thursday over his Justice Department's appointment of a special counsel to investigate possible ties between his 2016 presidential campaign and Russian Federation, calling it "the single greatest witch hunt" in USA history.

On the subject of the allegations - started in July 2016 by the Hillary Clinton campaign and embraced by Democrats and some of the media since her surprise defeat in November - that he and his campaign colluded with Russia, Trump said that "the entire thing has been a witch hunt".

Trump fired FBI Director James Comey last week, prompting some to call for an independent prosecutor to lead the investigation. And Senate Finance Chairman Orrin Hatch said of ending interest deductibility: "I don't think, in the final analysis, they're going to be able to do that".

Burr told reporters Thursday about the response from Flynn's lawyer. Several members leaving the meeting said the deputy attorney general was aware of Comey's pending termination before he penned the letter to Trump.

"He did acknowledge that he learned Comey would be removed prior to him writing his memo", Sen.

Comey reportedly told Trump that if he wanted details on the FBI's investigations, he ought to contact the Justice Department and follow proper procedures.

The Times story adds incremental credence to the assertion that Trump was poking around for ways to curry favor with Comey to quietly relieve some of the pressure the Russian Federation inquiry was putting on his administration. "Even my enemies say there was no collusion", he said. He has said at the point he left government, he had seen no such evidence to collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation; but he told lawmakers that as a private citizen, he has no window into any of the ongoing congressional or federal probes. Mr. Comey - who is 6 feet 8 inches tall and was wearing a dark blue suit that day - told Mr. Wittes that he tried to blend in with the blue curtains in the back of the room, in the hopes that Mr. Trump would not spot him and call him out.

Trump continued to assert that there was "no collusion", between his campaign and Russian Federation. We need a great director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Mr. Trump is scheduled to depart for his first foreign trip as president Friday.

"If the USA administration considers it possible, we are ready to deliver the record of Lavrov and Trump's meeting to the Senate and the Congress of the USA", he said. "Believe me, there's no collusion".

Trump appeared to criticize Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos as he stood mere feet away, saying that country's rate of coca production is too high. He then said "the wall" would help stop the flow of Colombian narcotics into the United States, referring to his promised U.S. -Mexico border barrier.

He said that he thinks the appointment of a special counsel "divides the country".

"Walls work. Just ask Israel", he said, ending that line of questioning.

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