Donald Trump is not under investigation for firing FBI Director James Comey, the president’s lawyer said, in seeming contradiction to a tweet the United States leader had sent out earlier complaining of a “witch hunt” against him.
Mueller, according to reports, is planning to interview key important national security officials about Trump’s alleged comments about ending the investigation into former national security advisor Michael Flynn’s reported ties to Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak.
Mr Trump was strongly critical of some of Mr Comey’s testimony but said Mr Comey had vindicated him by saying while he was at the agency, Mr Trump was not the subject of the FBI’s Russian Federation probe.
Trump’s tweets following the report appeared to confirm the investigation, but his lawyer said it only appeared that way because of the character limit on Twitter.
Trump’s 9:07 a.m. tweet appeared to be principally directed at Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, the number-two official at the Justice Department who authored a memo justifying Comey’s firing.
The report comes a day after Attorney General Jeff Sessions, a close aide of Trump, vehemently denied any role in Russia’s alleged meddling in the 2016 USA polls and dismissed accusations that he discussed such an effort with Russian officials as an “appalling and detestable lie”.
The White House confirmed that Mr Mueller was among the candidates Mr Trump interviewed to replace Mr Comey.
The business dealings of President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and trusted aide Jared Kushner are being investigated by Justice Department special counsel Robert Mueller, the Washington Post reported Thursday, citing officials familiar with the matter.
An obstruction of justice finding could form the basis for Mr Trump’s impeachment but such a step would face a steep hurdle because it would require approval by the US House of Representatives, which is controlled by Mr Trump’s fellow Republicans.
“The FBI leak of information regarding the president is outrageous, inexcusable and illegal”, a spokesman for Mr Trump’s legal team, Mr Mark Corallo, said.
Why is Mr Trump being investigated? Mr Pence hired criminal lawyer Richard Cullen as special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation intensifies. A day later, Rosenstein appointed Mueller as special counsel.
The Democratic National Committee said on Friday it saw a need for Rosenstein to recuse himself, but it said control over the investigation should be given to Mueller and not another Trump appointee. He said he believes Mr Trump ultimately fired him “because of the Russian Federation investigation”.