5/12 “An ethics watchdog group filed a complaint against Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Friday alleging that his participation in the firing of FBI Director James B. Comey violated Justice Department rules and Sessions’s promise to recuse himself from matters involving Russia.“Firing the lead investigator is the most extreme form of interfering with an investigation,” wrote Fred Wertheimer, who signed the six-page complaint on behalf of his organization, Democracy 21.” :

5/12 “Former FBI Director James Comey will not appear before the Senate Intelligence Committee next week, despite an invitation to speak behind closed doors about getting fired by President Trump.” :

5/12 “Donald Trump has reportedly backed away from a planned visit to FBI headquarters in Washington, amid continued anger from current and former agents over the president’s abrupt firing of director James Comey. “What are you going to say? ‘I love you FBI’? And kiss babies and pose for pictures?” said Ron Hosko, a former FBI assistant director and currently the president of the Law Enforcement Legal Defense Fund, which provides support to officers who face criminal charges.“I think he just slapped the FBI in the face. It was disgraceful, outrageous, disgusting. These [FBI agents] are people who have education, who have experience. They know what bullshit looks and feels like.””:

5/12. “President Trump on Friday warned James B. Comey, the former F.B.I. director he fired this week, against leaking anything negative about the president and warned the news media that he may cancel all future White House briefings.”:

5/12 “Trump tweeted: “James Comey better hope that there are no ‘tapes’ of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!” The tweet, which if taken at face value would suggest Trump has been secretly taping White House meetings, came after the New York Times reported that he demanded “loyalty” from Comey in a private dinner held shortly after Trump took office.””:

5/12 “That’s a shift from the original White House statement, which said the president acted on the recommendation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Sessions’ role in Comey’s firing has raised eyebrows, since the attorney general promised months ago that he would steer clear of any investigation related to the presidential campaign. “Attorney General Sessions should not have had any involvement in this decision at all,” said Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn. “He recused himself. And yet he inserted himself in this firing.””

5/12 “Two weeks ago, Rod J. Rosenstein received the bipartisan confidence of the vast majority of the Senate during his confirmation as deputy attorney general. But a memo he drafted this week that has served as President Trump’s public justification for firing Comey has all but eviscerated that trust. Led primarily by Democrats, senators are now asking Rosenstein to come back to Capitol Hill next week to explain his role in Comey’s dismissal. A senior ­Republican, too, declined to defend Rosenstein’s actions after meeting with him behind closed doors.” :

5/12 “Since the explosive decision was announced Tuesday, the president’s advisers have struggled to come up with a consistent timeline and rationale. They said Trump was prompted by a scathing memo written by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, only to acknowledge Trump had been planning to fire Comey regardless of the recommendation. They’ve distanced the decision from the FBI probe into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 campaign, only to later suggest Comey’s firing would aid the investigation.” :

5/12 “It was the first time that Trump had explicitly tied the Russia probe to his rationale for firing Comey. It was one of a series of explanations for dismissing the FBI director, some of which directly contradict those offered earlier by top White House officials. Trump told NBC’s Lester Holt: “And in fact when I decided to just do it, I said to myself, I said ‘you know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story, it’s an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should have won’.””:


5/12 “The unfolding story over Mr. Trump’s abrupt firing of Mr. Comey hung over the hearing, infusing political theater into annual testimony by the nation’s top security officials about the biggest threats facing the United States.Mr. McCabe rejected the White House’s assertion that Mr. Comey had lost the backing of rank-and-file F.B.I. agents, a pointed rebuke of what had been one of the president’s main defenses for the move.“Director Comey enjoyed broad support within the F.B.I. and still does to this day,” Mr. McCabe said at the hearing.“The vast majority of F.B.I. employees enjoyed a deep and positive connection to Director Comey,” he added.” :

5/11 “Mr. Trump said on Thursday that he had not relied solely on the advice from the Justice Department’s top two leaders in making his decision. And, for the first time, he explicitly referenced the F.B.I.’s investigation into his administration’s ties to Russia in defending Mr. Comey’s firing.

“And in fact, when I decided to just do it, I said to myself, I said, ‘You know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story,’” Mr. Trump told Lester Holt of NBC News. “It’s an excuse by the Democrats for having lost an election that they should have won.”
Earlier, the White House had said that Mr. Trump acted only after Attorney General Jeff Sessions and the deputy attorney general, Rod J. Rosenstein, came to him and recommended that Mr. Comey be dismissed because of his handling of last year’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email. In his Tuesday letter terminating Mr. Comey, Mr. Trump said he had “accepted their recommendation.” And Vice President Mike Pence, talking to reporters, echoed his boss.” :



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