Published: Mon, May 15, 2017
USA | By Cassandra Hanson

Trump Threatens to Stop White House Press Briefings

Trump Threatens to Stop White House Press Briefings

Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said he does not know if there was collusion between President Trump's campaign and Russian Federation and that he was not privy to the details of the counterintelligence investigation.

Trump's tweetstorm railed against the "fake media" and those who expect his surrogates to defend him with "perfect accuracy", while giving a stern warning to Comey that he "better hope that there are no "tapes" of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!" When Trump then pressed for "honest loyalty, " Comey told him, "You will have that, " the associates said.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer declined to say how fast Trump would pick a Federal Bureau of Investigation director.

During the interview, Trump said there's an "incredible" level of hostility from reporters toward Press Secretary Sean Spicer and his deputy, Sarah Huckabee Sanders. Maybe, Trump said, he will just cancel briefings with the media altogether.

Trump has claimed that Comey told him on all three occasions that he wasn't personally under investigation. One of those phone calls Trump said he initiated and asked if he could inquire as to whether he was under investigation.

Initial news for Trump looked bad: NBC's polling found the majority - 54 percent - of Americans found Trump's move to be inappropriate. Trump wrote on Twitter Friday morning.

The White House has said Comey's firing was unrelated to the Russian Federation probe, but in the interview with NBC News on Thursday, Trump said he knew he ran the risk that by firing Comey he would "confuse people" and "lengthen out the investigation" into ties to Russian Federation.

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This talking point - that former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said there was "no evidence" of Trump campaign-Russia collusion - was debunked during a Senate hearing on Monday featuring testimony from Clapper and former acting Attorney General Sally Yates.

Mr Trump said he and Mr Comey "had a very nice dinner, and at that time he told me, 'You are not under investigation, ' which I knew anyway". Trump's firing of Comey already has left him with the dubious distinction of being the first president since Nixon to fire a law enforcement official overseeing an investigation tied to the White House. While presidents have the authority to fire their FBI directors for any reason, Mr Comey is only the second FBI Director ever to be dismissed.

Trump revealed to Holt that he had been planning to fire Comey even before he received Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein's recommendation to do so. That this investigation is one that touches directly on Trump's actions makes it that much worse, but even if it didn't presidents simply can not seek to stop the FBI from conducting a criminal inquiry. No one with half a brain actually believed that, and if there is any solace to be taken from Trump's admission, it's that we can at least stop pretending that the firing of Comey had anything to do with something other than Russian Federation.

"The president has nothing further to add on that". No one from the White House. Former President Barack Obama's ethics czar Norm Eisen also tweeted concern.

Trump confidants say Bannon has been marginalized on major decisions, including Comey's firing, after clashing with Kushner. Marco Rubio for president before backing Trump in May 2016.

The ousted director has told associates he was summoned to the White House for a one-on-one dinner with Trump just seven days after the January 20 inauguration, according to the paper.

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