Trump tells Russians Comey was a 'nut job'

Comey, meanwhile, agreed Friday to testify publicly before the Senate about his interactions with Trump sometime after Memorial Day. Former Trump associates including Carter Page, Paul Manafort, and Roger Stone - all of whom the president has distanced himself from - have been named by reports as potential targets, and former nat sec adviser Michael Flynn admitted to having improper conversations with a Russian ambassador during the transition.

In the remarks, Rosenstein also batted down news reports that Comey had ever requested more resources for the investigation, and said acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe could not recall such a request either.

Trump has repeatedly slammed the FBI and congressional investigations as a "hoax" and blamed disgruntled officials at intelligence agencies for leaking information related to the probes. Officials said it had nothing to do with the Russian Federation investigation.

Mueller, a former federal prosecutor, also is authorized to investigate any collusion between the Trump campaign and Russians who tried to influence the election, as well as any matters that result from the probe.

Comey's decision ended more than a week of speculation about whether he would appear publicly to make his case since he was sacked by Trump on May 9, and underscores how the probe is accelerating.

On Friday, the Post published a story claiming that the investigation of the Trump campaign colluding with Russian Federation has identified a White House official as a person of interest.

He also reportedly said, "I faced great pressure because of Russian Federation. He's saying he fired Comey in order to literally take pressure off himself with the Russian Federation investigation", Painter said.

The Washington Post reported on Friday that "the senior White House adviser under scrutiny by investigators is someone close to the president".

Republican Sen. Richard Burr of North Carolina and Democratic Sen.

This is the first report of a person now working in the White House being included in the federal probe.

The White House has struggled to explain the chain of events that led to Mr Comey's firing and exactly who made the decision. Reached for comment, though, Sean Spicer ... didn't deny that Trump said it. McClatchy cited members of Congress as being the source for the report, which was published after Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein briefed Congress on Friday.

The White House document that contained Trump's comments was based on notes taken from inside the Oval Office and has been circulated as the official account of the meeting.

He says his memo is not a finding of official misconduct and is not a statement of reasons to justify Comey's firing.

Mr Rosenstein reportedly spoke to the new, cover-up investigation in one of these briefings.

The memo focused on Comey's handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation, particularly the FBI director's decision to divulge details to the public at various junctures during her presidential campaign against Trump. Plus, the more bumbling Trump does in handling the Russian Federation investigation, the harder it is for Moscow to have any meaningful dialogue with Washington.

  • Leroy Wright