Ex FBI Head Comey to testify before Senate Intelligence Committee today

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Former Federal Bureau of Investigation Director James Comey is set to testify Thursday before the Senate intelligence committee about his interactions with President Trump and the possible links between the Trump campaign and Russian efforts to interfere in last year's presidential election.      

Comey recounted the conversation in his prepared opening statement to the Senate Intelligence Committee. The statement was released Wednesday. Comey recounted a Jan. 27 private dinner in the White House Green Room with the president. “I need loyalty, I expect loyalty,” Comey quoted Trump as saying.

Comey continued: “I didn't move, speak, or change my facial expression in any way during the awkward silence that followed. We simply looked at each other in silence.”

To this Comey replied, “Throughout history, some Presidents have decided that because 'problems' come from Justice, they should try to hold the Department close,” Comey said in the prepared remarks. “But blurring those boundaries ultimately makes the problems worse by undermining public trust in the institutions and their work.”

Political analyst and experts anticipate that this event could jeopardize Trump’s nascent presidency, bringing the two tiers of governments at horns against each other. After months of rumors and news reports, then-FBI Director Comey confirmed at a Senate hearing in March that the FBI had been investigating the Trump campaign since July of 2016.

However in a bizarre and unconventional manner, Trump continued to call these investigations as a hoax and labelled them as media trials. However, the investigation and its importance might’ve been downplayed by US President Trump, the need for firing Comey had no justification altogether which sent shockwaves into the country and into the world. This move was seen as a very blatant disregard for the separation of powers between executive and investigation agencies.

In the meantime, the investigation into the Trump campaign's ties to Russia continued. Not only that, but the Justice Department selected former FBI director Robert Mueller as a special counsel in the matter. The question however, continues to stay the same that what will Comey say in his testimony. It is expected that he will testify that he first met then-president-elect Trump in person at Trump Tower in January, where he briefed the president on an intelligence community investigation into “Russian efforts to interfere with the election.” Comey notes the details of the intelligence were “salacious and unverified.”

The issue of contention continues to be that whether President Trump did pressure Comey into dropping the Russian investigation and form the preliminary reports it seems highly likely.Now that Comey's conversations with the president are public, senators will also be interested in whether any other members of the Trump administration applied pressure to drop the investigation. That includes officials like Jared Kushner, President Trump's son-in-law and adviser, who reportedly tried to set up a backchannel with the Russian government during the presidential transition.

ABC, NBC, CBS, and Fox will all air the hearing when it begins at 10 am ET.

Posted on: 2017-06-08T13:23:00+05:00

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