Donald Trump is facing the deepest crisis of his presidency after contents of a memo written by James Comey when he was FBI director surfaced Tuesday, alleging that the president asked him to drop an investigation of former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn. Confidants say a staff shake-up is possible, although major changes are unlikely before Trump's foreign trip.
But Chaffetz indicated he hasn't been able to get in touch with Comey, who became such a national fixture when Trump fired that cable networks broadcast helicopter footage of his ride to the airport. Until now, there have been few exceptions to the rule of partisan loyalty.
Trump's plea on Flynn's behalf - perhaps it was prompted by the belief that his aide was a "good guy", perhaps by fear about what goods that good guy might have on him - is the mirror image of his debate pronouncement that "if I win, I am going to instruct my attorney general to get a special prosecutor to look into your situation". "Our allies and partners must have the utmost confidence that sensitive information they share with us will not be disclosed", he tweeted. He continued, "Regardless of what was shared in the meeting, it's unsafe to believe that Russian Federation can be a reliable counterterrorism partner". "This is their time to shine, to show Americans and the world that the White House isn't becoming a circus of errors".
Ever the paranoiac, Flynn reportedly believes that the investigation into his background is part of a vast conspiracy plot waged against him by whoever's left in government from the Obama administration to keep him out of the White House. We do know from press accounts that there was ambiguity about the conversations.More news: Chelsea star Cesc Fabregas: How I felt when West Ham beat Tottenham
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He said he would release a record of the meeting to the US Congress if they requested it. Claire McCaskill, after a Senate meeting with Rosenstein, said Rosenstein was aware Comey would be fired before writing the memo justifying Comey's firing. John McCain, R-Ariz., weighed in as well. Yet U.S. allies and some members of Congress have expressed alarm.
Vladimir Putin has waded into the growing row surrounding US President Donald Trump and his links to Russian Federation. "Sanctions - not intelligence-sharing - should be our course of action". He said he would give the Federal Bureau of Investigation a week and then "if we need a subpoena, we'll do it".
Whether Comey's documentation proves to be the tipping point for Republicans is unclear. Republicans will begin to realize that their agenda is going nowhere and that their political survival depends on Trump's political demise.
"I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go", Trump reportedly told Comey. They might consider that it was the GOP leaders who went to tell Richard Nixon in 1974 that the jig was up, not the dead-enders, who went down in history as patriots.