Comey: Trump Asked for Loyalty, and, Let Go Flynn Investigation
Wednesday afternoon, the Justice Department released the opening statement that former Director of the FBI, James Comey, will give tomorrow before the Senate Intelligence Committee. The statement has a bombshell accusation that the President of the United States did ask Comey to “to letting Flynn go” on February 14, 2017. Comey, in his statement, and in memos he kept that dealt with any communication from President Trump, stated that,” I had understood the President to be requesting that we drop any investigation of Flynn about false statements about his conversations with the Russian ambassador in December.” The President denied that he ever asked for such a treatment at a press conference on May 18th.
Comey then explains that he spoke to others in the bureau about the conversation but they decided not to inform Attorney General Sessions, as he had recused himself from the investigation, and to keep the matter close to the vest so it would not taint the investigation. Comey does say he spoke to Sessions about Trump and that he preferred not to be left alone with the President anymore, especially while the investigation was ongoing. Comey does admit that he did tell President Trump three times, that the President himself, was not under investigation personally. That, though may have changed with the President asking the FBI Director to drop an investigation.
The President continued to speak to Comey although, the FBI is supposed to be an independent of the White House. The first communication between Trump and Comey occurred January 27th. The President invited the Director to the White House for a dinner. The dinner had no other witnesses as it was just the two men. The President, according to Comey, said that he expected, “I need loyalty, I expect loyalty.” Comey states that he replied You will always get honesty from me.” Trump then said, “That’s what I want, honest loyalty.” Comey goes on to say that he isn’t sure if the President and he were on the same page as to what honest loyalty meant but it put an end to an uncomfortable dinner.
Trump continued to try and influence Comey’s handling of the Russian investigation in March. Comey details that the President called to ask about how to “lift the cloud” of the Russian investigation. Comey responded that the investigation was moving along as quickly as it could but Trump continued to complain that the “cloud” over him made it difficult for the administration to move forward on their platform for tax reform, etc. The President also questioned why Comey had said to the Senate Intelligence Committee that there was an investigation into the possibility of collusion between Russian and the Trump campaign. Comey responded that “we were not personally investigating President Trump. I reminded him I had previously told him that.” Comey does explain why they did not make a public statement about that. The Justice Department did not make public statements that we did not have an open case on President Trump for many reasons,” most importantly because it would create a duty to correct, should that change.”
Comey also identifies the last phone call he had with the President on April 11th. Again, the President asked when was Comey going to make a statement that Trump was not under investigation. Comey told the President that he had passed on the request for a statement so that the President could get out of the “cloud” hanging over Presidency to the Acting Deputy Attorney General Dana Boente. Comey reports that the President once again brought up loyalty. The President asked Comey for advice on how to get the Justice Administration to say the President was not under investigation. Comey replied that the White House Counsel should take care of the request. Trump agreed then said, “Because I have been very loyal to you, very loyal; we had that thing you know.” Comey did not respond and was fired by the President on May 9th.
Agnes Bedard calls herself a daughter of the 60's. She stills believe that one voice can lead us out of darkness, that one person can start a change, and that one act of kindness can change one person's world. Politics is how the world works to change and that is why she is so passionate about it. As Agnes said we need to fight for our f.uture. Agnes Bedard is also the author of "Before I was Me" Bedard is also a wife, mother and grandmother