US President Donald Trump denies firing FBI director James Comey over Russia probe

President Donald Trump denied Wednesday having fired FBI director James Comey a year ago over the investigation into links between his election campaign and Russia.

Published: 18th April 2018 07:47 PM  |   Last Updated: 18th April 2018 07:47 PM   |  A+A-

US President Donald Trump (File Photo | AP)

By AFP

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump denied Wednesday having fired FBI director James Comey a year ago over the investigation into links between his election campaign and Russia.

Trump made the denial as a new book by Comey added fuel to allegations that Trump may have engaged in criminal obstruction of justice when he dismissed Comey on May 9, 2017.

"Slippery James Comey, the worst FBI Director in history, was not fired because of the phony Russia investigation where, by the way, there was NO COLLUSION (except by the Dems)!" Trump said via Twitter early Wednesday.

Officially, Comey was fired based on the recommendation of Trump-appointed Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

But in an interview with NBC News two days after the firing, Trump made clear the letter was not the real reason, and suggested that the Russia probe was behind his thinking.

"Regardless of recommendation, I was going to fire Comey," he said.

"In fact, when I decided to just do it, I said to myself, you know, this thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story, an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election."

"As far as I'm concerned, I want that thing to be absolutely done properly," he added.

"In my opinion, it should've been over with a long time ago because all it is an excuse."

That statement, together with Trump's later attacks on Comey and the Justice Department's Special Counsel Robert Mueller, now the head of the Russia investigation, have stoked accusations by Democrats and some legal experts that Trump has sought to stifle the probe.

Comey's memoir released on Tuesday, "A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies and Leadership," describes conversations he had with Trump before he was fired in which the president seemed to pressure him over the Russia investigation.

But Comey has refrained from accusing Trump of obstruction, saying in an interview with National Public Radio Tuesday that he did not have the full picture of Mueller's probe to be able to make that judgement.

Mueller, meanwhile, has been silent on the direction of his nearly year-long investigation, but media reports citing people informed on the probe say it has widened from allegations of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia to include possible obstruction.



Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp