‘False statements & lies’: Trump takes to Twitter to slam Comey testimony
Donald Trump has issued a much anticipated tweet in response to James Comey's Senate Intelligence Committee hearing, accusing the former FBI director of "false statements" and "lies," and pointedly noting that Comey leaked the details of a meeting.
"Despite so many false statements and lies, total and complete vindication...and WOW, Comey is a leaker!" Trump tweeted on Friday morning.
Despite so many false statements and lies, total and complete vindication...and WOW, Comey is a leaker!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 9, 2017
His tweet references Comey's Thursday hearing before the Senate Intelligence Committee, in which he recalled conversations he reportedly had with the president.
At a press conference with the Romanian president later in the day, Trump said he never asked Comey to drop the probe into General Michael Flynn.
"I didn’t say that,” he told reporters. “There would be nothing wrong if I did say that… but I didn’t say that.”
He also said he would be “100 percent” willing to make that statement under oath.
Comey said he made a written record of many of those conversations, due to "circumstances, subject matter, and the person I was interacting with," in apparent reference to President Trump.
The former FBI director admitted that he asked a friend who is a law professor at Columbia University to "share the content of the memo with a reporter," hoping it would prompt the appointment of a special counsel.
Trump's personal attorney, Marc Kasowitz, has called on Comey to be investigated over leaking those "privileged communications."
“Today, Mr. Comey admitted that he unilaterally and surreptitiously made unauthorized disclosures to the press of privileged communications with the President,” Kasowitz said in a statement released after the Comey hearing on Thursday.
“We will leave it [to] the appropriate authorities to determine whether this [sic] leaks should be investigated along with all those others being investigated.”
Trump's son, Donald Trump Jr., also took to Twitter to address the memo leak, asking "is this a joke?"
Did I miss something or did Comey just say he asked a friend to leak information to the press? Is this a joke?— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) June 8, 2017
He went on to express his anger with Comey's overall testimony, calling it "bulls**t."
Referencing the Russian investigation, Trump Jr. quoted a tweet from the Republican Party which said that Trump "never asked to stop the investigation and Russia didn't change a single vote," referring to Moscow's alleged interference in the 2016 US presidential election.
He went on to reference a statement by Comey in which he said Trump said he hoped the FBI director would “let it go” when it came to the investigation into ex-National Security Advisor Michael Flynn.
Comey claimed Trump said "I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go" regarding the Flynn probe.
However, according to Donald Trump Jr., that comment was "very far" from any sort of coercion to get Comey to drop the investigation and was "certainly not obstruction."
2/3 very far from any kind of coercion or influence and certainly not obstruction!— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) June 8, 2017
“Knowing my father for 39 years when he ‘orders or tells’ you to do something there is no ambiguity, you will know exactly what he means," he tweeted.
3/3 Knowing my father for 39 years when he "orders or tells" you to do something there is no ambiguity, you will know exactly what he means— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) June 8, 2017
The rift between Trump and Comey was also clear on Thursday, when Comey expressed confidence that the American people should choose to believe him – not Trump – at the hearing.
"I think the people should look at the whole body of my testimony...why did he (Trump) kick everybody out of the Oval Office?" Comey said, referencing his claim that Trump once cleared everyone out of the room to talk to the former FBI director about dropping the Flynn investigation.