Fmr FBI Chief, US President lob accusations at each other over Russia probe

World Today

Fired former FBI Director testifies about private meetings with U.S. President Trump.

Comey talked about his private conversations with President Trump on the Russia investigation.

CGTN’s Nathan King has more on Comey’s testimony.

Time after time, the fired former head of the FBI called the sitting President of the United States a liar.

James Comey said that the President pressured him on multiple occasions in private meetings – and on the phone – to drop the investigation into fired National Security Advisor Michael Flynn and to make public that the President himself was not subject to an investigation.

Comey said Trump asked for his “loyalty,” too.

Is any of this a crime? Comey didn’t directly accuse the president of committing a crime, but Comey said he had never experienced anything like it.

“I don’t think it’s for me to say whether the conversation I had with the president was an effort to obstruct. I took it as a very disturbing thing, very concerning, but that’s a conclusion I’m sure the special counsel will work towards to find out the intention and whether that’s an offense,” the former FBI Director said.

Comey said he did not act on the president’s wishes, but kept records of the meetings and shared them with the FBI leadership. He said he thinks he was fired due to Trump’s frustration over the investigation into his alleged campaign links with Russia.

The U.S. president, uncharacteristically, didn’t directly comment. But his lawyer did accusing Comey of lying on every accusation.

“The President never, in form or substance, directed or suggested that Mr. Comey stop investigating anyone, including suggesting that Mr. Comey ‘let Flynn go.’ The President also never told Mr. Comey, ‘I need loyalty, I expect loyalty’ in form or substance,” Marc Kasowitz, Trump’s attorney said.

The most powerful man in the world is at odds with the man who was until recently the most powerful law enforcement official in the United States. Each now reduced to finger pointing at each other in public.

Now the focus will switch to the special counsel Robert Mueller, the former head of the FBI himself. Remember, he is looking into criminal charges potentially linked with Russian collusion in 2016 and it seems in this testimony that we’ve heard that he may also be looking into obstruction of justice charges against the sitting president.

This is not the beginning of the end, but perhaps the end of the beginning.