Donald Trump says tapes bluff 'wasn't stupid' and kept James Comey 'honest'

Jackie Newman
June 26, 2017

The former head of the Federal Bureau of Investigation testified before a Senate committee that Trump had asked him to halt a probe into former national security adviser Michael Flynn's alleged collision with Russian Federation.

"Well, I didn't tape him", he said in an interview with Fox News' "Fox and Friends" when asked why he wanted Comey to believe that tapes existed.

Speaking in an interview with Ainsley Earhardt of Fox News that aired Friday, Trump first said he was generally suspicious of the FBI and intelligence apparatus in charge of the investigation into his presidential campaign's ties to Russian Federation, saying "you never know what's happening when you see that the Obama administration, and perhaps longer than that, was doing all of unmasking and surveillance".

It's unclear whether Trump and his surrogates still think Comey lied about the loyalty pledge and Trump's desire to quash the Flynn investigation.

The president suggested that Comey's story changed after he issued the threat about tapes. It failed, spectacularly: Instead of silencing Comey, it set in motion the special counsel investigation that now haunts Donald Trump's waking imagination.

That special counsel, former Federal Bureau of Investigation director Robert Mueller, is now reportedly investigating Mr Trump's own actions in a probe that could dog his presidency for the foreseeable future.

May 16 appears to be his first time Wittes previewed Comey stories. "I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn't lose voters", was how Trump put it during the 2016 campaign.

The piece cited a memo that Comey filed just after a February 14 meeting he had with Trump at the White House.

CNN reported on Thursday that two top US intelligence officials told investigators Trump suggested they publicly deny any collusion between his campaign and Russian Federation, but that they did not feel he had ordered them to do so.

According to one person familiar with the matter, who spoke on condition of anonymity, Trump raised the possibility of tapes as a strategy to ensure that Comey told the truth, even though Trump now is suggesting that did so because he couldn't be sure there were no recordings made by others.

In March, Trump tweeted that he had been wiretapped by Obama prior to the election.

This went on throughout the presidential campaign and into the transition period after Trump had been elected. "He said, 'I'll meet you at the hospital right now'".

"You've got to ask the question: Why is somebody threatening tapes other than to try to intimidate somebody?"

In his testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee, Comey said Trump's tweet made him give his memos of meetings with Trump to a friend.

His tweet came a day before he was required by Congress to hand over any such tapes.

Huckabee Sanders and the press office intensified the Wonderland atmospherics at the White House when they refused to let her appearance be shown on video and then described an announcement of this refusal as "NONREPORTABLE".

"There's nothing criminal or illegal about bluffing", said Alan Dershowitz, a Harvard Law School professor who has often defended Trump against various allegations.

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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