Trump Responds To Comey Testimony, Calls Former FBI Director 'A Leaker'
- Author: Leroy Wright Jun 17, 2017,
Jun 17, 2017, 2:20
Peter Baker, the Times' chief White House Correspondent, found a placard bearing his publication's name among the seats furthest away from President Trump during a joint press conference with Romanian President Klaus Iohannis in the Rose Garden.
Comey testified that Trump asked him to quash an active investigation into one of his associates in February, weeks after the president asked his former FBI director to pledge personal loyalty.
"No collusion, no obstruction", Trump told a White House press conference in reference to the twin controversies dogging his administration - accusations his aides colluded with the Russian effort to tilt the vote, and that he sought to block a probe related to the matter.
He also denied that Comey's version of the events of a February 14 meeting, in which Trump said that he "hoped" that the FBI director could let go of an investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.
Asked by a reporter if he had told Comey to drop the investigation into former national security adviser Flynn, Trump said, "I didn't say that".
"The best thing said on this is nothing", said former NY mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani, a Trump friend and former Justice Department official.
He also pointed to the "tapes" tweet as the reason he chose to leak memos recounting his conversations with Trump, saying he was afraid Trump would use them to misrepresent their conversations.
After the hearing, the president's personal lawyer issued a statement rejecting much of Mr Comey's allegations. "And there would be nothing wrong if I did say it according to everybody that I've read today, but I did not say that", he said. Susan Collins, a moderate Republican, said Congress needs to obtain any tapes the president might have of his dealings with the former Federal Bureau of Investigation director.
"I hardly know the man", Trump said.
The Senate Committee pulled no punches in its line of questioning, asking Comey if the president obstructed justice, but Comey declined to comment. That is a crime, not unlike obstruction of justice.
Donald Trump Jr. and other high-profile Trump supporters also took to social media and television with rebukes.
"This is an abuse of process & we will be filing a defense of Comey". You suggested he didn't tell the truth in everything he said.
The lawyers also plan to send a complaint to the Senate judiciary committee raising questions about Mr Comey's previous testimony to that panel.
TRUMP: Well, I didn't say that.
Trump's team has been quick to push back, and a main thrust of their strategy is to discredit Comey, painting him as disgruntled and untrustworthy.