Published: Thu, May 18, 2017
National | By Rosalie Gross

Top Republican senator invokes Watergate scandal after Comey memo emerges


It appears the Trump-Russia investigation got a kick in the trousers after a pair of damning news stories that suggested that Donald Trump not only divulged sensitive intelligence to the Russians that could potentially jeopardize the U.S.'s relationship with Israel but that he also allegedly asked then-FBI director James Comey during a February meeting to end the investigation into Mike Flynn.

"A thorough investigation will confirm what we already know - there was no collusion between my campaign and any foreign entity", he declared in a statement. "In the meantime, I will never stop fighting for the people and the issues that matter most to the future of our country", Trump added.

Trump made the surprise move of firing Comey, head of an investigation into Trump and his campaign's alleged ties with Russian Federation, early last week.

"The role of a special counsel is to follow all the facts wherever they lead, and bring charges if warranted", he said in a statement.

"He's one of the finest people I've ever met", Comey said of Mueller later in the same hearing.

Asked if he trusted Comey or Trump, Amash replied:"I think it's pretty clear I have confidence in Director Comey".

An emailed fundraising appeal by Trump's political organization and the Republican National Committee sent out after reports of the Comey memo said Trump was being victimized by an "unelected bureaucracy".

The surprise announcement to hand the probe over to Mr Mueller, a lawman with deep bipartisan respect, was a striking shift for Mr Trump's Justice Department, which had resisted increasingly loud calls from Democrats for an outside prosecutor.

President Donald Trump gestures as he gives the commencement address at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in New London, Conn., Wednesday. The official said there was widespread agreement among staff that the appointment of Mueller provides Trump and his aides with the opportunity to "commit ourselves to doubling down on the agenda".

"I think it's reaching the point where it's of Watergate size and scale, and a couple of other scandals we've seen,"McCain said at a Washington event on Tuesday night".

White House Reeling From New Bombshell Allegation
Comey created documenting what he perceived as the president's improper efforts to influence a continuing investigation. Justin Amash (R-MI) told reporters that if the Comey memo is true, it is grounds for impeachment.

Republican Representative Steve Knight on Tuesday said he joined "many of my colleagues in supporting the assignment of a special prosecutor to take over the ongoing FBI investigation".

In the 1990s, Democrats complained that independent counsel Kenneth Starr, who investigated President Bill Clinton, overstepped his authority. Where is the actual crime that they think they need a special prosecutor to prosecute? "You have two Senate committees that are looking into this, the Federal Bureau of Investigation is conducting their own review". Flynn is one of the subjects of the FBI investigation. Mark Warner, as well as asking Comey to testify.

"I hope you can let this go", Trump told Comey, according to Comey's notes recounted to the Times.

Rosenstein appointed Mueller under a statute used in 1999, when John C. Danforth was appointed to investigate allegations of government wrongdoing in the siege at the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas.

Mueller later threatened to resign alongside Comey, who was then serving as deputy attorney general, over Bush administration officials' continued attempts to reauthorize the program.

The White House counsel was notified after the special counsel order was signed and soon before it was publicly announced.

He's been reacting to the appointment of former FBI director Robert Mueller to lead an investigation into possible links between Moscow and the campaign.

"What I have determined is that based upon the unique circumstances, the public interest requires me to place this investigation under the authority of a person who exercises a degree of independence from the normal chain of command", Rosenstein said.

Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr says the appointment of former FBI Director Robert Mueller as a special counsel is a "good decision" that "assures the American people that there's no undue influence" in the probe of Russian meddling in last year's election.

His law firm, WilmerHale, says he resigned immediately upon his Wednesday appointment by the Justice Department.

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