Comey memos: Trump exploded at Flynn over delayed return call to Putin
- Author: Leroy Wright Apr 21, 2018,
Apr 21, 2018, 18:25
Both American political parties have claimed partisan vindication from the memos. Here, Trump's tweet badly mischaracterizes their contents.
The memos are largely a reiteration of what has already been leaked and written in the media.
"Flynn said the return call was scheduled for Saturday, which prompted a heated reply from the President that six days was not an appropriate period of time to return a call from the [redacted] of a country like [redacted]", Comey wrote of Trump's account of conversation. Comey agreed that the leaks were "terrible" and he was "eager to find leakers and would like to nail one to the door as a message".
In an offshoot of the Mueller probe, Trump's longtime personal lawyer's office and home were raided by the Federal Bureau on Investigation on Monday. During a phone call in mid-March - documented in Comey's final memo, interestingly enough - Trump inquired again about making public the fact that he was not the target of the FBI's investigation.
Comey's memos show Trump repeatedly asking for his help to "lift the cloud" being cast over his presidency by the Russian Federation probe.
He wanted the FBI to launch an investigation into disproving the Steele Dossier.
Comey headed the investigation begun in July 2016 into whether there was any coordination between Trump associates and Russian officials during the 2016 presidential election.
American intelligence agencies a year ago said Russian Federation interfered in the election through a campaign of propaganda and hacking in a scheme to sow discord in the United States and help get Trump elected.
The developments put the ex-FBI boss in the crosshairs of an investigation just as his former deputy, Andrew McCabe, faces a criminal referral over a separate leak.
This, too, could be at odds with Comey's June 2017 Senate testimony that he avoided classified material in the memos so that they could be widely shared.
The double standards extend to Comey's private and public opinions of the President. He has said he feels conflicted about McCabe's legal problems given that the two men worked closely together. President Donald Trump has repeatedly attacked McCabe and Comey by name, and those insults have been amplified by the inspector general's findings.
"When I made a decision to just do it, I said to myself, I said you know, this Russian Federation thing with Trump and Russian Federation is a made-up story", Trump told NBC's Lester Holt.
Trump was right about McCabe, and while it took him longer to figure it out, he ultimately was right about Comey, too.
In an indication of the mounting legal pressures on the United States president, Mr Trump's personal lawyer Jay Sekulow has also announced new additions to the president's legal team, including former NY mayor Rudi Giuliani.
"Days earlier, I had met alone with the newly confirmed deputy attorney general at his request so he could ask my advice on how to do his job, which I held from 2003 to 2005", Comey wrote.