Trump suggests he was trying to keep Federal Bureau of Investigation director honest

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said that they are, but White House Adviser Kellyanne Conway has downplayed the importance of the tweets.

In other comments in the full interview on Fox, which aired Friday morning, Trump reiterated how ineffective Democrats and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi have been at winning elections.

U.S. media said Mr Mueller was also examining whether Mr Comey's sacking was an attempt by the president to alter the course of the investigation.

The president said Comey "did admit that what I said was right".

In the Fox and Friends interview, Trump suggested that the possibility of tapes, one that he raised in a tweet shortly after Comey was terminated from his position, may have changed Comey's account of events.

Mr Comey also said that Mr Trump asked him for "loyalty" - which Mr Trump emphatically denies.

President Trump would have known that his bullying bluff would fail if he understood how principled people like Comey work. He said he made the suggestion as a way of ensuring that Comey did not misrepresent their private conversations.

But Mr Trump's belated admissions did little to quell allegations that he has sought to stifle investigations into possible collusion between his presidential campaign and Russian interference in last year's election. So you never know what's out there.

"Still, the document, according to The Washington Post, factored into then-FBI Director James Comey's controversial decision to publicly announce the end of the Clinton email investigation - without discussing it in advance with Lynch", CBS News writes. "You're going to be very disappointed when you hear the answer", Trump added.

Mr Trump has seized on that statement as vindication, though the investigation continues, as do congressional inquiries.

While White House officials have said the firing was due to concerns about Mr Comey's actions at the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Mr Trump told an interviewer the Russian Federation investigation was one of his concerns in taking the action.

"It wasn't stupid, I can tell you that", Trump replied.

Trump fired Comey in May, shortly after which Mueller was appointed by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to lead the FBI investigation of Russia's interference in the 2016 USA election and possible ties to Trump associates.

"They are also four good guys and are four friends of mine", Trump said.

Trump's earlier suggestion about tapes evoked the secret White House recordings that led to Richard Nixon's downfall in the Watergate scandal. "I'm not hinting at anything", said Trump at a joint press conference with the president of Romania on June 9, a day after Comey met with the panel.

  • Leroy Wright