Trump, without evidence, accuses James Comey of lying to House Judiciary Committee
By Devan Cole, CNN
President Donald Trump lashed out at former FBI Director James Comey over testimony he gave to the House Judiciary and Oversight committees on Friday, accusing the former FBI chief, without evidence, of lying to lawmakers and questioning his inability to recall events related to certain questions.
“On 245 occasions, former FBI Director James Comey told House investigators he didn’t know, didn’t recall, or couldn’t remember things when asked. Opened investigations on 4 Americans (not 2) – didn’t know who signed off and didn’t know Christopher Steele. All lies,” Trump tweeted Sunday morning.
Trump claimed in a second tweet that the former FBI chief “must have set a record for who lied the most to Congress in one day.”
“This whole deal is a Rigged Fraud headed up by dishonest people who would do anything so that I could not become President. They are now exposed!” Trump wrote.
Comey’s testimony came during a six hour closed-door meeting with Republicans and Democrats on the committees in which he answered questions about the FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails, the Russia counterintelligence investigation he launched before he was fired from the FBI and the potential dismissal of special counsel Robert Mueller by Trump.
According to a transcript of the interview released Saturday, Comey said he didn’t recall the answers to many of the questions, particularly when it came to details from the Clinton investigation that occurred back in 2015 and 2016.
Comey also told the panel that the FBI launched its Russia counterintelligence investigation into four individuals and not the Trump campaign itself.
“The Trump campaign was not under investigation,” he said in response to a Democratic question asserting that it was. “The FBI, in late July, opened counterintelligence investigations of four Americans to see if they were working in any way with the Russians to influence our elections.”
An FBI attorney present at the interview told Comey not to answer certain questions about the Russia investigation, including about the sources used by Trump dossier author Christopher Steele, arguing that the sources for the document are still relevant to the special counsel investigation.
Lawmakers and Comey said that the interview was tense and that Republicans were frustrated by instructions from the FBI attorney telling Comey not to answer certain questions. Comey and House Democrats said the interview was a waste of time, consumed with questions about Hillary Clinton’s emails.