Published: Mon, June 19, 2017
Local | By Ada Griffith

Trump confirms he's under investigation

Part of the revelations surrounding the Russian Federation investigation and the firing of Comey has been that Trump repeatedly pushed top intelligence officials to say in public that Trump was not personally under investigation and that there was no evidence of collusion between his campaign and Russian Federation in its interference in the 2016 election.

Trump later said in interviews he had planned to fire Comey anyway, and in an NBC interview said he had the Russian Federation investigation in mind when he made a decision to dismiss the FBI director.

President Donald Trump says he is being investigated for firing FBI Director James Comey by the man who told him to do it. Trump had previously boasted that he was not personally under investigation, and Comey said the president had repeatedly pressured him to publicly clear him.

Although there is still no word from special counsel Robert Mueller on the obstruction of justice investigation reportedly ongoing against President Donald Trump, a new poll has revealed that most Americans think the president guilty of a felony in interfering with the official FBI investigation into the alleged Russian Federation tampering with the 2016 presidential election.

Others have pointed to news that Mueller interviewed with Trump for the Federal Bureau of Investigation director post after Comey's firing. ABC said Rosenstein told Associate Attorney General Rachel Brand she would have authority over the probe if he were to step aside.

And it was Rosenstein who appointed Robert Mueller as the special counsel to lead that investigation after Comey was sacked.

President Trump has vigorously objected to the propriety of such an investigation.

That dramatic story takes on new meaning in 2017 with Comey and Mueller back in the thick of things.

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Ian Prior, a Justice Department spokesman, said in an email Friday that Rosenstein "has said numerous times, if there comes a point when he needs to recuse, he will". Justice Department and special counsel press aides have declined to confirm or deny reports about the focus of Mueller's investigation.

The president tweeted Friday, "After 7 months of investigations & committee hearings about my 'collusion with the Russians, ' nobody has been able to show any proof".

Mr Trump was criticised for the tweet by the senior Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Dianne Feinstein.

Yet Trump's angry tweets on Friday underscored the near-impossible challenge his advisers and legal team have in trying to get him to avoid weighing in on an active investigation. The official demanded anonymity because the official was not authorized to be named discussing the deliberations.

Presumably, a probe into possible obstruction would involve investigating the Comey's firing in May. An official of Trump's transition confirmed the lawyer's internal order, which was sent Thursday.

He said this week he had not found reason to do so - making the statement in the days after Trump's friends raised the possibility that the president himself was thinking of "terminating" Mueller. Trump has disputed both claims, saying flatly that he never asked Comey to drop the Flynn probe.

The White House has directed questions to outside legal counsel, which has not responded.

Inside the White House, a sense of foreboding has taken hold on even the most junior staff and up to the Oval Office, as news emerged that Vice President Mike Pence has hired a high-powered outside counsel to represent him.

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