Trump looks to move quickly on appointing new Federal Bureau of Investigation chief

The committee had hoped to hear from Comey in a closed session following his abrupt firing on Tuesday by President Donald Trump.

"No one should accept President Trump's absurd justification that he is now concerned that FBI Director Comey treated Secretary Clinton unfairly". Details of the dinner were first reported by The New York Times. "Instead, Mr. Comey has recounted to others, he told Mr. Trump that he would always be honest with him, but that he was not "reliable" in the conventional political sense".

In an interview with United States news network NBC on Thursday, Trump revealed that he had asked Comey on three occasions whether he was under investigation as part of the FBI's probe into Russia's meddling in last year's presidential election and possible collusion with the Trump campaign team.

White House officials said Trump is considering almost a dozen candidates to replace Comey, including Texas Sen.

The White House says Trump asked his lawyers for a letter following a request from Republican Sen.

Comey did not confirmed Trump's account of the meetings. Dick Durbin and Dianne Feinstein are calling on Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to resign if no special prosecutor is named to replace ousted FBI Director James Comey in the investigation into Russia's meddling in the 2016 US election.

USA authorities seize former NY congressman Anthony Weiner's laptop and mobile devices as part of a probe into allegations he sent sexually explicit text messages to a 15-year-old.

Trump's top spokesman refused to comment on whether listening devices are active in the Oval Office or elsewhere, a non-denial that recalled the secretly taped conversations and telephone calls that ultimately led to President Richard Nixon's downfall in the Watergate scandal.

Trump also suggested that he may bring to an end the White House press briefings, hinting that he doesn't completely trust his staff to convey his messaging accurately. Later in the dinner, Trump again said to Comey that he needed his loyalty.

A businessman and reality television star who never served in public office, Trump may not have understood that by tradition, Federal Bureau of Investigation directors are not supposed to be political loyalists, which is why Congress in the 1970s passed a law giving them 10-year terms to make them independent of the president.

Noted legal scholar Laurence Tribe told AFP that if Comey did indeed answer Trump's question, it would violate Department of Justice rules and "would be unthinkably unethical and unprofessional in this situation". In Trump's telling, Comey reassured him that he was not. Maybe, Trump said, he will just cancel briefings with the media altogether.

Trump said in the NBC interview, "Regardless of recommendation, I was going to fire Comey".

  • Larry Hoffman