Politics

Trump Blasts Reports That He's Under Investigation

| by Michael Howard

President Donald Trump has responded to reports that he is now under investigation for obstruction of justice, calling the allegations against him "phony" and once again describing the investigation as a "witch hunt."

The Washington Post reported on June 14 that special counsel Robert Mueller is expanding the FBI's investigation into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 election, and is also looking into whether Trump obstructed justice by firing former FBI Director James Comey.

Mueller was appointed special counsel by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein following Comey's termination. During his testimony before Congress on June 8, Comey stated that he thinks Trump sacked him in order to disrupt the FBI's investigation, according to Reuters.

Trump has taken to Twitter to address the news that he is now under investigation.

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"They made up a phony collusion with the Russians story, found zero proof, so now they go for obstruction of justice on the phony story. Nice," the president wrote on June 15.

An hour later he wrote: "You are witnessing the single greatest WITCH HUNT in American political history -- led by some very bad and conflicted people!"

The Post reports that Daniel Coats, the director of national intelligence, and Mike Rogers, the head of the National Security Agency (NSA), have agreed to be questioned by Mueller's team. Richard Ledgett, Rogers' former deputy, will also be interviewed.

In a statement, the NSA said it is prepared to "fully cooperate with the special counsel." Coats and Ledgett have not commented on the report.

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During a congressional hearing, Coats and Rogers both denied having been pressured by Trump to suppress the FBI's investigation.

"I have never been directed to do anything I believe to be illegal, immoral, unethical or inappropriate," Rogers said, according to CNN. "And to the best of my recollection, during that same period of service, I do not recall ever feeling pressured to do so."

Mark Corallo, speaking on behalf of the president's personal attorney, Marc Kasowitz, dismissed the news report as an unlawful leak.

"The FBI leak of information regarding the president is outrageous, inexcusable and illegal," he told The Post.

In the past, Trump had repeatedly emphasized the fact that Comey told him he was not personally being investigated for possible collusion with the Russians.

"I know I'm not under investigation," he said on May 11, two days after firing Comey, according to CNN. "I'm not talking about campaigns. I'm not talking about anything else. I'm not under investigation."

Following Comey's testimony, Trump tweeted his thoughts on Comey.

"Despite so many false statements and lies, total and complete vindication … and WOW, Comey is a leaker!" he wrote.

Sources: The Washington Post, Reuters, CNN (2), Donald Trump/Twitter (23) / Photo credit: Michael Vadon/Flickr

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