Friday, 19 October, 2018

President Trump Asked Comey To Shut Down Flynn Investigation

Kayla Schwartz | 17 May, 2017, 10:57

"We know that lying about your sex life can get you impeached".

Shortly after the New York Times published its story, FT and CNN independently confirmed the newspaper's reporting. Trump disclosed classified information in that meeting.

The person says the goal of the memos was to keep a record of encounters Comey found odd or troubling.

The associate is also confirming an account from The New York Times that Trump vented about media leaks during a conversation with Comey and expressed his support for seeing reporters in prison. The White House originally pegged the president's decision on the recommendation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, but Trump himself pushed back, saying it was his decision alone. Acting FBI director Andrew McCabe told Congress last week the investigation is "highly significant" and said Mr Comey's dismissal would do nothing to impede the probe. A small number of FBI agents were made aware of the memo and the conversation, and agents kept working on the investigation.

A source told CNN that Trump's request so appalled Comey, he felt compelled to document it.

Trump fired Comey, not yet four years into his 10-year term, last week and admitted later he was thinking about the Russian Federation investigation when he made the decision. "Quit investigating, damn it'".

Mark Warner of Virginia, top Democrat on the Senate intelligence committee, said he would ask Comey for additional material as part of that panel's investigation. In 2007, years before his appointment as Federal Bureau of Investigation director, he recounted to a rapt congressional audience a dramatic hospital room clash three years earlier with fellow Bush administration officials over the approval of a domestic surveillance program.

A USA official who confirmed the disclosure to The Associated Press said the revelation potentially put the source at risk.

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"I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go", Trump told Comey, according to a memo reported about by the Times.

Even before news of the Comey memos broke, the West Wing was wallowing in despondency, amid talk of staff shakeups and as shock still percolated following reports that Trump divulged top secret intelligence to two top Russian visitors to the Oval Office last week - a development that focused unflattering attention on the President's basic competence. The letter is expected Tuesday night.

Multiple sources who have worked closely with the former director, including within the Justice Department, say Comey is known for his fastidious notetaking. The usually circumspect Senate Republican leader, Mitch McConnell said Tuesday morning the party needs "less drama" from the president.

Flynn is a retired general who became a prominent Trump supporter and surrogate during the campaign.

The associate was not authorized to discuss the memo by name and spoke on condition of anonymity.

A current official told NBC News that Comey and Trump had their conversation after a previously scheduled counter-terrorism briefing in the Oval Office. After that meeting, the Times reported that Trump asked everyone to leave the room except for Comey.

The disclosure rocked the administration as it struggled to move past the backlash over Trump's abrupt firing on May 9 of FBI Director James Comey, whose agency was investigating potential ties between Russian Federation and Trump's 2016 presidential campaign.

This latest revelation is "a disturbing yet unsurprising culmination of Trump's war on the press", Trevor Timm, executive director of the Freedom of the Press Foundation, said in an email.

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