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Trump embarks on trip without naming Federal Bureau of Investigation chief

Former FBI Director Robert Mueller will oversee the FBI's Russia probe Former FBI Director Robert Mueller will oversee the FBI's Russia probe
Eleena Tovar | 20 May, 2017, 10:37

"I faced great pressure because of Russia", Trump told Russian officials who visited him in the Oval Office the day after he fired Comey, according to a Friday New York Times report.

"By grandstanding and politicizing the investigation into Russia's actions, James Comey created unnecessary pressure on our ability to engage and negotiate with Russia", Spicer said.

In the simplest terms, there is a big difference between headlines that say "one of the president's senior advisers is under investigation" and headlines that say "some people who used to work for candidate Trump are under investigation".

Rosenstein then discussed how, when he learned that Trump wanted to fire Comey and asked for Rosenstein's input, "I wrote a brief memorandum summarizing my longstanding concerns about Director Comey's public statements concerning the Secretary Clinton email investigation". "He was insane, a real nutjob", the newspaper reported, referring to a summary of the conversation.

"I faced great pressure because of Russian Federation". Trump said as much in one televised interview, but the administration has offered changing justifications for the firing.

Mueller's former law firm, WilmerHale, represents Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner, who met with a Russian bank executive in December, and the president's former campaign manager Paul Manafort, who is a subject of a federal investigation.

The AFP reported that the Russian president has a recording of an exchange between Trump and the Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov that he was "ready to provide" if necessary.

This is not the first time Trump's White House has offered an explanation for an event that was later directly contradicted.

"I just got a message from the president to stay strong", Flynn told his friends at a restaurant in northern Virginia late last month, according to Yahoo News. Trump's first national-security adviser, Michael Flynn, was sacked over misstatements about his conversations with the Russian ambassador.

USA stocks immediately pared gains after the reports but still closed higher for a second straight day. A Washington Post report, citing anonymous sources familiar with the matter, said a senior Trump adviser is now considered a "person of interest" in the law enforcement investigation into whether Trump's campaign associates coordinated with Russian Federation in an effort to sway the 2016 election. But Trump later acknowledged in an interview with NBC that the Russian Federation investigation was a factor.

At the time, the White House distributed the memo written by Rosenstein, which was dated May 9.

The committee's chairman, Sen.

The Justice Department's newly appointed special counsel, Robert Mueller, was given the authority to investigate not only potential collusion but also related allegations, which would include obstruction of justice.

Mr Rosenstein told Congress he stands by a memo he wrote bluntly criticising Mr Comey.

But he made it clear it was not his intention for Mr Trump or other White House officials to use the document to justify firing Mr Comey, and he drafted it only after Mr Trump told him of his plans to dismiss the Federal Bureau of Investigation director.

"The committee looks forward to receiving testimony from the former director on his role in the development of the intelligence community assessment on Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. elections, and I am hopeful that he will clarify for the American people recent events that have been broadly reported in the media", Burr said in a statement.