Sen. Susan Collins: President Trump should voluntarily turn over tapes

Alvin Kelly
June 12, 2017

Mr Comey made notes of his encounters with Mr Trump.

The president has answered Comey's Senate testimony with outright denials, new talk of possible tapes, and a pledge to tell his story under oath.

William Brangham has the story. "Yesterday showed no collusion, no obstruction", Mr Trump said. He accused Comey of saying things that "just weren't true". In the end, a special counsel was appointed. So I asked a friend of mine to share the content of the memo with a reporter.

The existence of recordings of the conversations has become more important now that Trump and Comey are at odds on key points of the narrative. You suggested he didn't tell the truth in everything he said.

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: I didn't say that. No, I didn't say that and I didn't say the other.

Trump: And there'd be nothing wrong if I did say it, according to everybody that I've read today.

The president's personal lawyer on Thursday denied that Trump asked Comey to drop the Flynn investigation.

Iohannis spoke of Trump's remarks last month about some members of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation not spending enough of defense, saying he liked the USA president's speech on the matter.

Karl: When will you tell us about the recordings?

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So far there is no evidence that tapes of Comey and Trump's conversations actually exist outside of the White House, creating an air of mystery around the idea and distracting from the many already damning allegations around the Trump administration. "He should give a straight yes or no to the question of whether or not the tapes exist".

Asked if there were tapes of his meetings with Comey, Trump said, "Oh, you're going to be very disappointed when you hear the answer".

In short, Comey's hearing didn't exactly turn out the way Democrats had hoped.

SEN. SUSAN COLLINS, R-Maine: I found him to be credible, candid and thorough. But he testified under oath.

Mr Trump's private lawyer, Marc Kasowitz, seized on the admission, casting the former Federal Bureau of Investigation director as one of the "leakers" set on undermining the Trump administration.

QUESTION: So, if Robert Mueller wanted to speak with you about that ... "Hey, I hope this happens, but you've got to do your job.' That's what he told Comey".

The president's son frequently disputed Comey's remarks, retweeted factually dubious or false claims and shared television clips from pundits supporting his father. "He's new in government, and so, therefore, I think he's learning as he goes", Ryan told reporters following Comey's hearing.

The committee want the material by 23 June. In early March, a week after Sessions recused himself from the Russian Federation probe, the Huffington Post reported on a "likely" third meeting between Sessions and Kislyak at the Mayflower Hotel near the White House.

For the PBS NewsHour, I'm William Brangham.

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