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Trump Fired Comey. Then the FBI Took Action: Report

'NYT' says bureau opened inquiry into whether Trump was working for Russia
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 12, 2019 8:30 AM CST
President Trump listens during a roundtable discussion on border security with local leaders on Friday at the White House.   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

(Newser) – The New York Times has a new "bombshell" on President Trump, and it ties back to a probe into his potential ties to Russia—not Robert Mueller's investigation, but one reportedly opened by the FBI soon after Trump fired FBI Director James Comey on May 9, 2017. Sources say the president's behavior after that event caused the bureau to start looking into whether he was working for Russia against US interests (either knowingly or unwittingly), whether what he was doing posed a threat to American national security, and whether getting rid of Comey could be considered obstruction of justice. The Times pinpoints two specific instances that jump-started the inquiry: a letter Trump penned to Comey (and never sent) that mentioned the FBI's investigation into Russia, as well as an NBC News interview days after Comey's firing in which Trump seemed to suggest he fired Comey over the Russia probe.

The FBI inquiry was brought under Mueller's umbrella when he was appointed on May 17, 2017. White House press secretary Sarah Sanders backed up her boss Friday, calling the Times report "absurd," per Fox News. The president pumped out his own series of pushback tweets Saturday morning, trashing Comey, ex-FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, and Comey's "best friend" Robert Mueller, as well as claiming that "corrupt former leaders" of the FBI "opened up an investigation on me, for no reason & with no proof." He added: "I have been FAR tougher on Russia than Obama, Bush or Clinton. Maybe tougher than any other President. At the same time, & as I have often said, getting along with Russia is a good thing, not a bad thing. I fully expect that someday we will have good relations with Russia again!" (Read more President Trump stories.)

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