Friday, 24 November, 2017

James Comey's friend says he was disgusted after Trump's WH hug

Francis Olson | 19 May, 2017, 19:59

Perhaps "Bulworth" or "Wag the Dog".

It's as if the made-for-TV movie about the Trump administration's scandals is being scripted in real time, in real life.

In response, White House spokesman Sean Spicer told the Times Thursday in a statement that "the sworn testimony" of both Comey and Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe "make clear that there was never any attempt to interfere in this investigation".

Former FBI Director James Comey was so concerned that his contacts with President Donald Trump jeopardized the agency's independence that he documented all of them and gave the records to his aides, a longtime friend said Thursday.

President Donald Trump (L) shakes hands with James Comey, former director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), during an Inaugural Law Enforcement Officers and First Responders Reception in the Blue Room of the White House on January 22, 2017 in Washington, D.C.

The cameras were rolling as White House caterers brought champagne and wine into the Blue Room and the president thanked the group of officials for their hard work.

The contacts include a telephone call shortly after taking office in which Trump asked Comey when federal officials would announce that he was not under investigation for alleged Russian ties, the Times reports.

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So Comey did his best to blend into the background.

Comey has also claimed that Trump asked him to back off of investigating former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

"Comey described at least two incidents which he regarded as efforts on the part of the President personally to compromise him or implicate him with either shows of closeness or actual chumminess with the President", writes Wittes.

"He thought he had gotten through and not been noticed or singled out and that he was going to get away without an individual interaction", Wittes said he was told by the former FBI Director whom he studied with at The Brookings Institute. "He's become more famous than me!" Comey told Wittes he believed the call to be urgent so he delayed a helicopter flight he was set to take. Bad enough that he was there; bad enough that there would be a handshake; he emphatically did not want any show of warmth. "Trump grabs the hand and kind of pulls [Comey] into the hug, but the hug is entirely one-sided".

Trump and Comey met five days later at a one-one-one dinner at the Oval Office.

It doesn't carry quite the intrigue of Bob Woodward sneaking into an dimly lit parking garage to press Deep Throat for Watergate tips.

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