Key moments of Trump-Comey clash and what's come after

Olive Rios
May 19, 2017

During a Friday morning tweetstorm, the president appeared to imply that there are tapes of his private conversations with Comey, who Trump fired earlier this week.

American democracy is "under assault" on separate fronts from President Donald Trump and Russian Federation, the former USA intelligence chief warned Sunday, expressing dismay over the abrupt firing of Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey amid a probe into Moscow's meddling in US elections and possible ties with the Trump campaign.

Trump's tweet came the morning after he asserted Comey had told him three times he wasn't under FBI investigation.

The New York Times reported Thursday that Trump had pressed Comey for his loyalty in a January 27 dinner meeting, but that he only promised that "he would be honest with him always".

The president told Lester Holt on Thursday that he had planned to fire Comey all along, regardless of what top Justice Department officials had to say about the decision.

That coverage of the Comey story prompted the Friday tweet storm from the president, who also continued to loudly deny that he or his team had anything to do with Russia's hacking Democrats during the 2016 election.

In the message, Trump touted the confirmation of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court and pledged to campaign heavily for House and Senate candidates during the 2018 midterms.

"The US White House explained that there was no scandal and it was posted on their website that that everything had been agreed like in the case with other ministers", Lavrov said. "Maybe the best thing to do would be to cancel all future "press briefings" and hand out written responses for the sake of accuracy???"

"When James Clapper himself, and virtually everyone else with knowledge of the witch hunt, says there is no collusion, when does it end?"

Trump was widely known to record some phone conversations at his office in Trump Tower during his business career, sometimes remarking to aides after a call as to whether or not he had taped that one.

These reasons contradicted the White House's assertions - and even the widely-disseminated termination letter Trump sent Comey - that the dismissal was based on the recommendations of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who criticized Comey's handling of the email investigation into Hillary Clinton previous year. "And I hope that we can get Comey to come up here and testify".

"I think loyalty to the country, loyalty to the United States is important", Trump said.

The White House denied the account.

Typically, when presidents make decisions of this magnitude, there's a clear plan in place to communicate that decision to the press - and the American public. He also led the FBI's global Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and Antitrust Programs.

Democrats quickly seized on the dispute, demanding the White House turn over any tapes that might exist of the president's conversations with Comey.

As for the shifting version of events surrounding Comey's ouster, the president argued that he is too busy for his staff to know all that is going on and suggested he could cancel press briefings altogether.

When asked, "Internally, from the president?" When asked if the tweet was a "threat" against Comey, Spicer insisted that Trump "stated a fact and the tweet speaks for itself".

Comey was overseeing two important investigations that shaped Trump's previous year victory against Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

Comey has not yet responded to the Senate intelligence committee's invitation to testify in closed session next week, Democratic and Republican spokespersons for the committee told CNN Friday. But he called Trump's tweet "inappropriate".

-Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, the No. 2 Senate leader and a former Texas attorney general.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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