US President Donald Trump says he's being investigated for firing Federal Bureau of Investigation director

by Johanna Valdez June 21, 2017, 6:30
US President Donald Trump says he's being investigated for firing Federal Bureau of Investigation director

A source familiar with the Mueller investigation confirmed the report, saying an examination of possible obstruction of justice charges was "unavoidable" given testimony by former FBI director James Comey, although the issue may not become the main focus of the probe.

On Wednesday, the Washington Post reported that Mueller was investigating if Trump obstructed justice when he fired Comey.

The Deputy Attorney General appointed Mueller as Special Counsel to oversee the FBI's investigation into the possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia's meddling in the election.

Mr Comey, who was sacked on May 9, told a Senate panel last week he believed Mr Trump dismissed him to undermine the FBI's Russian Federation probe. Sad!" he wrote. "Despite the phony Witch Hunt going on in America, the economic & jobs numbers are great.

Mr Trump may have been referring to deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein, who in a memo to Mr Trump raised concerns over Mr Comey's performance. The Washington Post reported this week that Mueller is investigating whether Trump attempted to obstruct justice when he suggested Comey drop an FBI investigation into Michael Flynn, Trump's former national security adviser, as well as when he fired Comey.

Rosenstein also approved the appointment of Mueller as special counsel after the recusal of Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

Meanwhile, Vice President Mike Pence's office confirmed yesterday that he has retained Richard Cullen, a former US attorney and the former Virginia attorney general, in response to the investigation.

Dianne Feinstein, top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, said she was "increasingly concerned" that Trump will fire both Mueller and Rosenstein.

The first is into whether anyone on Mr Trump's campaign or associated with it, with him or with any of his businesses, may have had any illegal dealings with Russian officials or others with ties to the Kremlin, said the official.

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Rosenstein wrote a memo indicating that the FBI is unlikely to regain the trust of the public and Congress until it has a Director who understands the gravity and pledges no to repeat Comey's mistakes in handling the investigation into Hillary Clinton's e-mails.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the deputy White House press secretary, referred questions about Trump's tweet to the President's private attorney, Marc Kasowitz.

"The message the president is sending through his tweets is that he believes the rule of law doesn't apply to him and that anyone who thinks otherwise will be fired", Feinstein said.

The order came the same day that Vice President Mike Pence hired an outside lawyer to represent his legal interests. "Regulations way down, jobs and enthusiasm way up!"

Trump is an avid user of Twitter, with over 32 million followers on his personal account and more than 18 million people on the official presidential account.

Beyond Mueller's inquiry, both the House and Senate intelligence committees are probing Russian election hacking and Trump collusion. And Democrats and Republicans alike have criticized his use of Twitter, particularly amid the ongoing investigation into Russia's interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Comey, whom Trump fired in early May, said in Senate testimony earlier this month that the President spoke to him privately on February 14 and asked him to drop the bureau's investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn's alleged ties to Russian Federation.

Trump has called The Washington Post report a "phony story" and a "WITCH HUNT".


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