After building suspense, Trump says he doesn't have tapes of Comey conversations
- Author: Salvatore Jensen Jun 23, 2017,
Jun 23, 2017, 20:30
US President Donald Trump said on Thursday he had not obstructed the FBI's probe into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 US presidential election and had not recorded his conversations with former Federal Bureau of Investigation chief James Comey.
Mueller was appointed special counsel by the Justice Department to lead the investigation after Trump fired Comey, who was leading the Russian Federation investigation at the time he was ousted.
After the tweet, Mr Comey testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee to make his account of interactions with the President public.
"Not a great strategy President Trump", he said.
In the same Fox & Friends interview Thursday, Trump hinted at his annoyance regarding Mueller and Comey's close relationship, calling their friendship "very bothersome".
But the president's suggestion that his tweet influenced Comey to be truthful in recounting his conversations contradicts Trump's own assertion that Comey misled Congress. He then added that "there has been leaking by Comey".
Trump, as commander in chief, has the authority to know about any covert actions being performed by intelligence agencies or any electronic surveillance in the White House, Blumenthal said.
The May tweet had prompted Comey to begin sharing his details of the conversations with the media just before the eventual appointment of a special counsel to lead an independent investigation.
Asked if Mr Trump regrets the original tweet, she replied: "I don't think so".
"Oh, you're going to be very disappointed when you hear the answer", Trump said.
Warner says Trump's tweet has no effect on the committee's investigation of Russia's meddling in the 2016 presidential election.
"I certainly think that the President would hope that the former director would tell the truth, but I think it was more about raising the question of doubt, in general", she said.
Trump has talked privately with advisers and friends about the possibility of firing Mueller, something the president would have to do by ordering his Justice Department to remove him.
"The notion of tapes, for Comey, that tweet, that made him excited", surmised the host. The President suggested the friendship makes Mueller's objectivity, intentions, and investigation flawed. But, when he found out that I, you know, that there may be tapes out there, whether it's governmental tapes or anything else, and who knows, I think his story may have changed. The president has a history of making unsubstantiated claims and says Comey is lying about key points without providing evidence.