Sunday, 22 October, 2017

Trump denies seeking Comey 'loyalty,' dodges tapes question

Wilma Wheeler | 14 June, 2017, 04:37

In a joint press conference with Romanian President Klaus Iohannis Friday, Trump picked on ABC News' Jonathan Karl to ask a question.

Earlier in his press conference, Trump said he was "happy" with parts of Comey's testimony, including that the former FBI director said he had assured the president he wasn't personally under investigation regarding the Russian meddling in the election and possible collusion by Trump campaign aides. "I'm not going to say, 'I want you to pledge allegiance, '" Trump added.

"He then said, "I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go".

The attorney also denied Comey's statement that Trump, at a White House dinner, told the then-FBI director "I need loyalty, I expect loyalty", and that Trump asked him in an Oval Office meeting to drop an Federal Bureau of Investigation probe into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.

House and Senate investigators have now fired off requests for both Mr Comey's memos and any recordings the White House kept of his private meetings with President Trump.

When reporters kept shouting questions about the tapes, Trump shot back, "Oh you're going to be very disappointed when you hear the answer".

Comey said he refused on all points, told senators of the detailed memos he had written after his conversations with Trump and said he hoped those conversations were taped because he is confident of their veracity.

So far there is no evidence that tapes of Comey and Trump's conversations actually exist outside of the White House, creating an air of mystery around the idea and distracting from the many already damning allegations around the Trump administration.

The committee want the material by 23 June. Would you be willing to speak under oath to give your version of those events? In his testimony, Comey said that after he was sacked and Trump's May 12 tweet, he gave the memos to Richman with the intent that they be leaked to the media.

Comey delivered a scathing indictment of his former boss, accusing him of trying to block an investigation of former national security adviser Michael Flynn and saying the White House defamed him and the FBI in trying to explain his dismissal.

Trump also denied asking Comey for a pledge of loyalty.

"One hundred per cent", Mr Trump said.

Trump's last tweet before Friday morning came at 8:17 a.m. on Wednesday and was about his planned trip to Cincinnati to speak about his infrastructure plans.

On Friday, Trump called the testimony a "total and complete vindication" of him.

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