Former FBI chief James Comey's long-anticipated memos on his private meetings with President Trump were released to Congress on Thursday after House Republicans seeking to clear the president of obstruction of justice allegations threatened to subpoena the documents. Comey has said he kept a detailed record of his conversations with the president because he worried Trump would end up lying about them some day. Some highlights from the 15 pages of documents, which were obtained by the AP:
- "We need to go after the reporters." Comey said Trump discussed jailing reporters in a Feb. 2017 conversation about preventing leaks. Comey said he told Trump: "I was eager to find leakers and would like to nail one to the door as a message. I said something about it being difficult and he replied that we need to go after the reporters, and referred to the fact that 10 or 15 years ago we put them in jail to find out what they know, and it worked."
- "Beautiful hookers." Comey said Trump, fixated on lewd allegations in a Russia dossier, told him Putin had bragged about the beauty of Russian prostitutes. The president "said 'the hookers thing' is nonsense, but that Putin had told him 'we have some of the most beautiful hookers in the world,'" he wrote. Comey wrote that the president said it "really bothered him" if his wife had any doubt about the "Golden Showers thing."
- Flynn's "serious judgment issues." Comey said that at a Jan. 2017 dinner, Trump complained that national security adviser Michael Flynn had some "serious judgment issues." "I did not comment at any point during this topic and there was no mention or acknowledgment of any FBI interest in or contact with General Flynn," Comey wrote.
- Question about a Flynn warrant. Comey said days before Flynn's firing on Feb. 13, 2017, then-White House chief of staff Reince Priebus asked him if the adviser's communications were being monitored under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. Comey's response is redacted in the unclassified version of the memos.
Trump claimed to be vindicated after the documents were released, the Washington Post
reports. "James Comey Memos just out and show clearly that there was NO COLLUSION and NO OBSTRUCTION," he tweeted
. "Also, he leaked classified information. WOW! Will the Witch Hunt continue?" Comey told CNN that he had no problem with memos being turned over to Congress and said they were consistent with what he wrote in his memoir. "I think what folks will see if they get to see the memos is I've been consistent since the very beginning, right after my encounters with President Trump," he said.