Top Republican senator invokes Watergate scandal after Comey memo emerges

Frederick Owens
May 19, 2017

Trump fired Comey last week, sparking suspicions that the president is trying to cover up his administration's ties with Russian Federation.

No, James Comey's memo doesn't prove anything in and of itself.

Under pressure to provide guarantees to Congress and the public that the Russian Federation probe will continue unhindered, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein tapped Robert Mueller - a widely respected figure who headed the Federal Bureau of Investigation for the decade after the 9/11 attacks - to take over the reins.

King said, "I have real questions here".

Reliable reports emanating from the White House indicate that the president spends much of his day watching television news and raging at what he sees (with one exception: Fox News) and at aides for allowing such reports to happen.

Republicans have largely stood behind Trump in the first months of his presidency as the FBI and congressional investigations into Russia's election meddling intensified. It is a question that clearly drives Trump to distraction - and he dare not try to fire Mueller.

(2) Trump knew about the pending investigation.

"I look forward to this matter concluding quickly". He dismissed outrage over Trump's disclosures as US politicians whipping up "anti-Russian sentiment".

The panel's top Democrat, Elijah Cummings of Maryland, a constant Trump critic, called the allegation of Trump pressure on Comey "explosive" and said "it appears like a textbook case of criminal obstruction of justice".

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The vice president and two spokesmen for the White House said Comey was removed from office on recommendations from Justice Department leaders, who were unhappy with his handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation in 2016. In January, only days after the inauguration, then-acting Attorney General Sally Yates had informed Trump's White House counsel that Flynn had been interviewed by the FBI as part of an active investigation.

"The time President Trump spent sharing sensitive information with the Russians was time he did not spend focusing on Russia's aggressive behavior", McCain said.

The development comes as the Trump administration faces questions over why and how the president fired Comey last week as the FBI was investigating whether Trump's presidential campaign was connected to Russian meddling in the election. So, again, I don't know what President Trump said to Director Comey.

His boss, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, was forced to recuse himself from the Russian Federation investigation due to his own undisclosed contacts with Moscow's ambassador, Sergey Kislyak.

Donald Trump has said that "no politician in history.has been treated worse or more unfairly" than him. As if reports of a Comey written memo - that purports to say Trump pressed him to drop the investigation into National Security Adviser Michael Flynn's Russian ties - doesn't get us there as well.

Given the politically explosive context, Mueller's appointment was widely welcomed across the political spectrum.

Mueller, a former federal prosecutor at the Justice Department, was confirmed as FBI director days before the September 11, 2001, attacks that would ultimately shape his tenure.

"Mueller is a great selection. Impeccable credentials. Should be widely accepted", tweeted Republican congressman Jason Chaffetz, who heads the House oversight panel.

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