Sacked FBI Director confirms Trump asked him to drop Flynn’s investigation
Fired FBI director James Comey confirmed Wednesday that US President Donald Trump urged him to drop a probe into his former national security advisor Michael Flynn — a bombshell revelation ahead of his hotly-anticipated appearance on Capitol Hill, Agence-France Presse reported.
In an explosive statement on the eve of his testimony to Congress, Comey said Trump raised the sensitive FBI probe into Russian meddling in the US election in multiple discussions, leaving him deeply uneasy over whether the president was attempting to interfere, AFP added.
“I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy,” Comey quoted Trump as telling him on February 14 as they sat alone together in the Oval Office, according to AFP.
“I had understood the president to be requesting that we drop any investigation of Flynn in connection with his false statements about his conversations with the Russian ambassador in December,” added Comey, who was fired by the US president early last month.
Comey also said Trump demanded he pledge his loyalty in a White House meeting on January 27, just days after he took office under the cloud of allegations that Russia’s interference helped him win election, AFP indicated.
In that meeting, Trump asked him if he wanted to stay in his job. Comey said he told Trump he was not “‘reliable’ in the way politicians use that word, but he could always count on me to tell him the truth.”
“The president said, ‘I need loyalty, I expect loyalty.’ I didn’t move, speak, or change my facial expression in any way during the awkward silence that followed,” Comey said, added AFP.
Comey’s comments, largely confirming press reports published in the past two months, were made in a statement ahead of his appearance before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday, AFP explained.
In it Comey made clear he was uncomfortable discussing an ongoing investigation with the president, even as he assured Trump that he himself was not a target of the probe, concluded AFP.
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