Sheldon Whitehouse: Rod Rosenstein's memo could be part of criminal investigation

Global stocks rally at end of volatile week

Global stocks rally at end of volatile week

The Washington Post reported Friday "the senior White House adviser under scrutiny by investigators is someone close to the president".

Other news reports have alleged Trump had previously asked Comey to stop the investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.

Earlier, The New York Times reported the US President had told Russian officials Mr Comey was a "nut job" whose ouster relieved "great pressure" on him. Committees in both houses of Congress have invited Comey to testify publicly. This appeared to challenge initial White House statements citing that memo as rationale for the firing - though Trump has acknowledged he planned to fire Comey regardless of any recommendation. "He was insane, a real nut job", Mr. Trump said, according to the document, which was read to The New York Times by an American official.

The reports came as Trump and his inner circle embarked on a nine-day swing through the Middle East and Europe. "He was insane, a real nut job", Trump told the Russian foreign minister and USA ambassador on May 10 during an Oval Office meeting, according to a transcript of the meeting read to The Times by a US official. "He did acknowledge that he learned Comey would be removed prior to him writing his memo", McCaskill told reporters.

While speaking with Russian Ambassador to the US Sergey Kislyak and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Trump reportedly said, "I faced great pressure because of Russia".

NATO leaders meet under intense Trump pressure on spending
Trump is slated to leave Brussels late Thursday for the final piece of his trip, a two-day stay in Sicily for G-7 meetings. President Donald Trump got to meet two European Union Presidents at the same time.

"Notwithstanding my personal affection for Director Comey, I thought it was appropriate to seek a new leader", Rosenstein said in prepared remarks for appearances before House and Senate lawmakers that were released Friday by the Justice Department. The White House is defending Trump's words and actions, claiming that letting Comey go was a negotiating tactic aimed at allowing the U.S.to better engage with Russian Federation.

Robert Mueller, who served as FBI chief under George W Bush, was appointed this week as special counsel for the investigation. "I also expect that Director Comey will be able to shed light on critical issues to this Committee's investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election".

Leave aside, for a moment, that the president has added "nut job" to "showboat" and "grandstander" to the list of terms he's used to refer to the former Federal Bureau of Investigation director.

President Trump fired Comey last Tuesday.

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