Trump slams reports about obstruction of justice investigation: "Phony story"

Elias Hubbard
June 27, 2017

In a series of statements on Twitter Thursday, Trump repeated his assertion that Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 campaign is a "WITCH HUNT" based on the "phony" premise of possible collusion between Russia and a cadre of Trump campaign associates. "Nice", Trump wrote on Twitter.

Rosenstein has said he is poised to recuse himself if he finds himself as a potential witness to Mueller's probe, meaning the top two officials at Justice would be on the sidelines for the Russian Federation investigation.

The president's tweets followed a report in the Washington Post Wednesday that said the special counsel overseeing the probe into Russia's alleged meddling in the U.S. election is now also looking at whether Trump attempted to obstruct justice.

Robert Mueller was appointed special counsel by the Justice Department after Mr Comey's sacking.

Comey told a Senate panel last week he believed Trump dismissed him to undermine the FBI's Russian Federation probe.

The obstruction of justice investigation into Mr Trump began days after Mr Comey was sacked on May 9, according to people familiar with the matter, The Washington Post said.

It is possible, however, that the sources for the Post report could have been those interviewed as part of the investigation, not the investigators themselves.

Comey said he typed notes describing the conversations because he was anxious Trump "might lie" later about them.

It was not known whether the Federal Bureau of Investigation was the source of the information in the Post's report. He declined further comment.

In a report published on Wednesday, the paper quoted five people briefed on the requests, saying those who agreed to be interviewed include national intelligence director Daniel Coats, Admiral Mike Rogers who heads the National Security Agency (NSA), and his recently departed deputy, Richard Ledgett.

Mr Comey testified under oath that Mr Trump had told him during a private meeting: "I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go".

Moscow has denied US intelligence agencies' conclusion that it interfered in last year's election campaign to try to tilt the vote in Trump's favor.

On Thursday, Trump blasted news reports that he is under criminal investigation as a "witch hunt" against him led by some "very bad" people.

Mr Trump's tweet sparked the derision of social media users.

About 60 percent of Americans think Trump attempted to obstruct or impede the investigation, the Associated Press/NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll found.

When asked why he hadn't asked the president to drop the matter, Comey said he was "stunned".

There has been no indication that Mr Mueller told the president to fire Mr Comey.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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