Published: Tue, May 16, 2017
Hi-Tech | By Merle Christensen

Clapper: US govt 'under assault' by Trump after Comey firing

"People had issues with Director Comey's - some of his decisions".

"The key is getting some of our Republican colleagues to join us", Schumer said.

The South Carolina Republican called Mr. Trump's tweet alluding to "tapes" of conversations with former Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey "inappropriate". The FBI has been investigating alleged Russian meddling in the US election and possible ties between Moscow and the Trump campaign.

"To fire him mid-investigation, boy oh boy, that raises a lot of questions", Warner said. Comey, for instance, was a former United States Attorney in Manhattan before being appointed deputy attorney general by George W. Bush. Sessions recused himself from involvement in the Russian election probe after failing to disclose 2016 contacts with Russia's ambassador to the U.S. "Now he seems to be violating that recusal". Comey, according to the New York Times, attended the matinee of the touring Broadway musical "Fun Home" a block away in downtown Washington. Many Democrats called for the appointment of an independent counsel to take over the Russian Federation investigation. "And I feel as though that's under assault and is eroding", Clapper said.

"The president has a chance to clean up the mess he mostly created", he said, adding, "I have no evidence that the president colluded with the Russians at all ... but we don't know all the evidence yet".

"I think the process is going to go quickly".

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He also said the "assault" on American institutions was not limited to Trump.

"We are in the midst of a civilization-warping crisis of public trust", Sasse said on CBS's "Face the Nation" on Sunday. John Cornyn of Texas, the No. 2 Senate Republican, who is under consideration.

So far 14 people have emerged as candidates.

Lawmakers from both parties also criticized Trump's actions last week, which included changing explanations from the White House for the firing and an ominous tweet by Trump that warned Comey against leaks to the press because he may have "tapes" of their conversations. Trump abruptly fired Comey on Tuesday and later said Comey was a "showboat" and "grandstander" who was not doing a good job. Mark Warner of Virginia, the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, said his panel or another committee would "absolutely" subpoena such tapes. "I have asked, others have asked, to make sure the tapes are preserved, if they exist". "'Tapes will be subpoenaed" Perhaps surprisingly, one of the most conservative Republicans in the Senate, Mike Lee of Utah, supported that call, telling a Fox News interviewer that it is "probably inevitable" that any tapes would have to be turned over. Graham said that if Trump has any tapes of conversations with Comey, "they have to be turned over". "You can't be cute about tapes", he told NBC.

In this May 10, 2017 file photo, President Donald Trump talks to reporters in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington.

Also interviewed were: Adam Lee, special agent in charge of the FBI's office in Richmond, Virginia, acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, Michael J. Garcia, Senator John Cornyn of Texas, US District Judge Henry E. Hudson, Frances Townsend, a former Bush homeland security and counterterrorism adviser, former Representative Mike Rogers of MI. Trump's overall approval numbers remained essentially unchanged since last month, however, even in light of the Comey news.

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