Firing 'nut job' Comey eased pressure, Trump told Russians

Blake Casey
May 20, 2017

Trump met with the Russians on May 10, the day after he fired Comey.

House minority leader Nancy Pelosi said Trump has shown his disrespect for the presidency if the Times report is accurate. They have, however, also jumped in with both feet on nearly any anonymous story linking this administration with Russia, spreading tales of electrical grids being hacked and breathlessly repeating reports "proving" Russian interference in USA elections, many of which have been found to be totally without merit.

"There will not be an announcement of a nominee for Federal Bureau of Investigation director today", the White House said ahead of Trump's departure for Riyadh, his first stop on the five-nation nine days foreign trip.

Trump and the White House have offered multiple, inconsistent motivations for Comey's early dismissal.

On Thursday, Trump declared himself the victim of the "greatest witch hunt" in American political history and denied allegations of collusion.

Burr said the committee wants to hear from Comey on his role in the development of the USA intelligence agencies' assessment that Russian Federation interfered in last year's election.

While White House staffers solidified the details of Trump's first foreign trip, sensitive information apparently poured out of the administration like a sieve to major U.S. news outlets regarding the president's handling of the former FBI director and the ongoing law enforcement investigation into his campaign.

President Donald Trump is facing new pressure over his decision to abruptly fire FBI Director James Comey after the New York Times revealed on Friday that the president told Russian officials in the Oval Office last week that Comey's ouster takes "great pressure" off him.

During the meeting - in which Trump allegedly revealed classified information provided by Israel - the president reportedly said Comey's firing a day earlier had had relieved him of "great pressure" over his ties to Russian Federation.

Former FBI Director James Comey has agreed to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee in an open session.

He said the investigation would have always continued, and the termination of Comey would not have ended it.

Tillerson: Trump weighs embassy move impact on Mideast peace
Addressing the press following the ceremony, Rivlin said that Israel looks forward to welcoming President Trump next week. Trump's controversial new ambassador also presented his credentials to the Israeli president at a ceremony in Jerusalem .

The memo is said to have been written by Mr Comey the day after Mr Flynn resigned.

In response to the latest reports on Friday, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer again rejected the allegations and said, "A thorough investigation will confirm that there was no collusion between the campaign and any foreign entity".

While speaking with Russian Ambassador to the US Sergey Kislyak and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Trump reportedly said, "I faced great pressure because of Russia".

Chairman Burr said the testimony will be scheduled after Memorial Day.

Comey is known to produce memos documenting especially sensitive or unsettling encounters, such as after the February meeting.

"By grandstanding and politicizing the investigation into Russia's actions, James Comey created unnecessary pressure on our ability to engage and negotiate with Russia", Spicer said.

The Justice Department on Wednesday appointed former FBI director Robert Mueller to lead the investigation.

"I wrote it", Rosenstein said.

Close aides and advisors to Mr Trump have been under scrutiny for having contact with Russians during the campaign and during the presidential transition period.

Trump has reacted furiously to the appointment of a special counsel, a prosecutor with wide authority to investigate Russia's interference and other potential crimes uncovered.