White House to hold off on naming FBI director

Senior White House aide'person of interest in Russia probe report

Senior White House aide'person of interest in Russia probe report

President Donald Trump declared himself the victim of the "greatest witch hunt" in American political history and slapped down accusations he tried to quash a probe into collusion between his campaign team and Russian Federation. The sources also say the investigation is expected to "accelerate" in the coming weeks, but that doesn't mean criminal charges are near or will be coming at all.

In a statement, he said that Comey had put unnecessary pressure on the president's ability to conduct diplomacy with Russian Federation on matters such as Syria, Ukraine and the Islamic State group.

Rosenstein denied media reports from last week that Comey had asked him for additional resources for his investigation before Trump fired him.

Former FBI director James Comey has agreed to publicly testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee about his role in the investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election, the committee announced Friday.

On Thursday, Trump lashed out over the appointment of former Federal Bureau of Investigation director Robert Mueller as the special counsel to probe Trump-Russia ties, saying that it "divides country".

On the other side of the White House fence, much of Washington watches the disintegration of a presidency, and even Democrats are not taking much joy in it.

Comey's firing sparked suspicion among Trump's critics and lawmakers anxious that the president might use his power to influence the FBI's investigation into whether Trump or his advisers colluded with Russian Federation to win November's presidential election.

The Justice Department on Friday released the text of Rosenstein's opening remarks for the briefings on Capitol Hill.

The conversation took place just one day after Comey's shock dismissal, which triggered accusations that the president was trying to obstruct the FBI's probe into whether his campaign colluded with Russian Federation to tilt the November election his way.

Trump's aides claimed that he was acting on a memo from Rosenstein, who set forth his deep concerns over how Comey had handled the inquiry into Hillary Clinton's maintenance of a private e-mail server.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein who made the decision to appoint Special Counsel Robert Mueller briefs the full House behind closed doors after briefing the Senate yesterday.

The White House has struggled since Comey's firing to explain the chain of events that led to it and who exactly made the decision. Lindsey Graham, that the special counsel would diminish Congress' investigations, though the leaders of those probes have insisted they will continue along with Mueller's investigation.

In this rare snippet of honesty - that he had hoped firing Comey would head off an investigation into collusion - Trump may have admitted to obstruction of justice.

"I believe it hurts our country terribly, because it shows we're a divided, mixed-up, not-unified country", Trump said at a luncheon with a group of television news anchors. Tim Scott, R-S.C. "I do think that the special prosecutor provides a sense of calm and confidence perhaps for the American people, which is incredibly important". "My memorandum is not a statement of reasons to justify a for-cause termination", he said. Rosenstein denounced that as "profoundly wrong and unfair".

It quoted unnamed sources familiar with the investigation as saying it was someone "close to the president" but they would not identify them further.

A senior administration official described Trump's reaction to Mueller's appointment as "measured".

Trump, at a combative and complaining press conference Thursday, he fell short in trying to resolve questions about investigations into his campaign and his first four months in office.

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