GOP senator says Trump served with info out

Lauren Perry
June 5, 2017

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Donald Trump is leaning against invoking executive privilege to try to block fired FBI Director James Comey from testifying about their private conversations regarding an investigation into Trump's former national security adviser, two administration officials said Sunday.

People familiar with the matter, though, say Comey has reached an understanding with Mueller's office about what he can and cannot discuss, and it seems Comey will be allowed to reveal at least some details of his exchanges with the president.

Comey is scheduled to testify on June 8 before the Senate Intelligence Committee about his May 9 firing by Trump, first in public and then behind closed doors. Comey, ousted last month amid a federal investigation into connections between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign, is set to testify before Congress next week in a highly anticipated hearing that could shed new light on his private conversations with the president in the weeks before the firing.

Former FBI Director James Comey is set to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee next week. Warner said he meant to use that time to ask Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and National Security Agency Director Adm. Mike Rogers about reports that Trump had urged them to say publicly there was no collusion between the Russians and the Trump campaign. But legal experts say Trump likely undermined those arguments because he publicly discussed the conversations in tweets and interviews. But Comey, now a private citizen, no longer has to listen to him, and it's unlikely a court would prevent him from testifying.

Sen. Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the Senate intelligence committee, said Sunday he hoped that Trump would not attempt to bar Comey's testimony.

Congress has yet to see Comey's memos about his meetings with Trump, with the Federal Bureau of Investigation so far declining a request from the House Oversight Committee to supply them.

Trump also said in an interview that he was thinking of "this Russian Federation thing" when he made a decision to fire Comey.

In his letter firing Comey, Trump said the former FBI director had informed him "on three separate occasions that I am not under investigation". Susan Collins, a Republican on the Intelligence Committee, said she also wants to understand "the tone, the exact words that were spoken" between Trump and Comey because the context is "so important".

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Some Democrats have argued that the dismissal of Comey, if meant to stifle the bureau's investigation into the Trump campaign, would amount to obstruction of justice - potentially an impeachable offense.

When pressed on what key questions remain for Comey as he faces lawmakers, Warner said "I want him to reinforce one, the fact that the Russians directly intervened in our elections".

"Does Mr. Comey agree that that is what was said?" "Where would we get this information from?"

In an interview with Megyn Kelly of NBC News, the Russian leader denies having any relationship with Trump.

U.S. intelligence agencies concluded in January that Moscow tried to sway the November vote in Mr Trump's favour. Then we talked about some other stuff. And I got up and left.

"I know that there was a sufficient basis of information and intelligence that required further investigation by the bureau to determine whether or not USA persons were actively conspiring, colluding with Russian officials", Brennan told the House Intelligence Committee.

Denial: Putin says he "didn't really talk" to Michael Flynn.

"If this theory is correct and that can't be ruled out, then what could be easier, in this day and age, than using all the technical means at the disposal of the intelligence services, and using those means to organize some attacks and then pointing the finger at Russian Federation", he said. "That's the extent of my acquaintance with Mr. Flynn", Putin said.

Other reports by VgToday

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