Published: Sun, May 14, 2017
National | By Rosalie Gross

Trump Denies Collusion Between 'Me and My Campaign and the Russians'

Mr Comey has not commented since he was sacked.

"That is not accurate", McCabe said. Later, however, they said that Trump had planned to fire Comey regardless.

He says it was the "greatest privilege" of his career to serve under him.

Opponents have claimed that Comey's shock sacking was a bid to stall an FBI investigation into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 election, which is also looking into possible collusion between the Kremlin and Trump's team.

But McCabe characterized the investigation as "highly significant" and assured senators Comey's firing would not hinder it. He also said it was unusual for someone not involved in a crime to ask the question.

"Any suggestion that today's announcement is somehow an effort to stop the FBI's investigation of Russia's attempt to influence the election last fall is misplaced", Collins said, not realizing that Trump and White House aides would soon after connect Comey's firing with the Russian Federation scandal.

HOLT: Monday you met with the Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

In a series of tweets, Mr Trump threatened Mr Comey and also warned that he may cancel all White House press briefings. "Regardless of recommendation I was going to fire Comey". The president raised eyebrows when he said he directly asked Comey whether he was under investigation.

Trump, in a letter to Comey dated Tuesday, contended that the director had told him "three times" that he was not personally under investigation. He promised he would tolerate no interference from the White House and would not provide the administration with updates on its progress.

Comey has neither publicly discussed conversations with Trump nor has he publicly commented on his dismissal.

It must be exhausting being a Trump supporter, knowing that even if you're loyal, even if you're sycophantic, even if you say and do exactly what the West Wing implores you to say and do, the president may decide to impulsively switch directions and undermine your credibility without so much as a warning. "It was a quick-moving process", she said.

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"This Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story; it's an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should have won", he said. But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, with the support of the White House, brushed aside those calls, saying a new investigation would only "impede the current work being done".

The Times said it was not clear whether the dinner was the same one that Trump described in the NBC interview in which the president acknowledged asking Comey whether he was the subject of a counter-intelligence probe.

TRUMP: I think that - about the Hillary Clinton investigation?

But Rosenstein's own role in Comey's firing became increasingly murky Wednesday.

"It's not surprising or abnormal that I would not have known about the investigation, or more importantly the content of that investigation", he added".

Given Trump's dismissal of the Russian Federation controversy, Holt pressed him on whether the FBI's investigation led to Comey's firing. Last week, Comey reportedly asked the Justice Department for more money and more agents to be devoted to an already expanding case (a claim the DOJ denies).

Reacting to the president's characterization just minutes after emerging from a meeting at the Capitol with Mr. Rosenstein, Sen.

Trump said Comey told him he was not under investigation during a dinner at the White House after the inauguration.

It's unclear whether Rosenstein was aware his report would be used to justify the director's ouster.

White House and other US officials insisted on anonymity to disclose private conversations. But it's Comey's dismissal that will accelerate the political consequences for Trump, even if it might threaten to slow the pace of the FBI's probe. Trump's comments demonstrated his striking deviation from that practice and scant concern for the appearance of Federal Bureau of Investigation independence. President Bill Clinton dismissed William Sessions amid allegations of ethical lapses in 1993.

The President did not answer directly, but said: "I just want somebody that's competent".

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