Trump's continued search for new Federal Bureau of Investigation chief seen as chaotic
- Author: Leroy Wright Jun 03, 2017,
Jun 03, 2017, 9:00
The former FBI chief was sacked by Trump on May 9 and will testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday, where he is expected to say Trump asked him to drop an investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn's ties to Russian Federation.
Trump reportedly told Russian officials during a visit to the White House on May 10 that firing Comey the previous day relieved "great pressure" the president was feeling from an investigation of possible ties between his election campaign team and Russian officials.
Conway told ABC News "the president will make that decision" on whether to invoke the privilege, while Spicer said that, "Obviously, it's got to be reviewed". Then in a February meeting at the White House, Rosenstein and President Donald Trump further "discussed" Comey's "deeply troubling" and "serious mistakes", Rosenstein wrote in his now-infamous letter recommending that Comey be fired.
The White House has said Trump also interviewed Lieberman, former Oklahoma Governor Frank Keating, acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe and former FBI official Richard McFeely.
In a separate statement on Wednesday, Republican Representative Mike Conaway and Democratic Representative Adam Schiff, who are leading the committee's Russian Federation probe, announced subpoenas for Trump's former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, and personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, as well as their firms. But such a manoeuvre would likely draw a backlash and could be challenged in court, they said.
Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, said Friday she doesn't believe Trump should try to block Comey's appearance.
Mr Trump has denied claims of any collusion, calling reports about the matter, "fake news". Mr. Comey's dismissal has spurred some Democrat to hurl obstruction of justice allegations against the president.
The White House has denied those characterizations.
Conway also took several shots at Comey - noting that after his last testimony, he had to release a letter correcting his statement that former Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin had forwarded thousands of emails to husband Anthony Weiner's computer. The following describes how executive privilege works and why it could backfire on Trump if he invokes it. "There's a cloud over the presidency that needs to be removed if the facts justify it", he said.
Robert Mueller, the former FBI director appointed special counsel overseeing the investigation, gave Comey the all-clear to testify next week.
There are already calls for Donald Trump to be impeached if was clear that he fired James Comey to stop the Russian Federation investigation. But given that he has already been in touch with Mueller's office, that seems unlikely. The reports contained no evidence that any Americans were targets of United States eavesdropping operations, they said.
Comey is set to testify before Congress about that memo next Thursday.
Rozell said that Trump can claim the privilege, but it would likely be a losing argument.