This is almost too much but it’s all going toward obstruction of justice so the pieces matter, especially since this is Comey week.
On the day we learned from Jonathan Karl atABC that AG Jeff Sessions suggested he might resign due to President Trump’s anger over the escalation of the Trump Russia investigation, the New York Times drops the news that Comey basically begged Sessions that he didn’t want to be alone with Trump after Trump asked him to kill the investigation into now fired Mike Flynn, which is part of the Trump Russia probe.
The day after President Trump pressured the then FBI Director James Comey to drop the Trump Russia investigation, Comey reportedly confronted Jeff Sessions saying he didn’t want to be left alone again with Trump, according to a new The New York Times report by Michael Schmidt and Matt Apuzzo.
This information came via current and former law enforcement officials, which is another way of saying “MORE WITNESSES.” Comey is not new to this game.
“Mr. Comey believed Mr. Sessions should protect the F.B.I. from White House influence, the officials said, and pulled him aside after a meeting in February to tell him that private interactions between the F.B.I. director and the president were inappropriate,” the Times reported. “But Mr. Sessions could not guarantee that the president would not try to talk to Mr. Comey alone again, the officials said.”
So Sessions didn’t feel he could guarantee Comey independence from the President, which is something the FBI Director was supposed to have from the White House. This notion of independence goes to Trump’s attempt to interfere in an investigation, which is when obstruction of justice charges could apply.
There are also two more rather big potential witnesses, based on a Washington Post report by By Adam Entous that President Trump asked the Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats to steer Comey away from the Russia probe, two days after his March testimony. CIA Director Mike Pompeo was also asked to stay in the room.
“The nation’s top intelligence official told associates in March that President Trump asked him if he could intervene with then-FBI Director James B. Comey to get the bureau to back off its focus on former national security adviser Michael Flynn in its Russia probe, according to officials.”
Coats is testifying Wednesday in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee. It should be noted, however, that Coats’ spokesperson told the Washington Post, “Director Coats does not discuss his private conversations with the President. However, he has never felt pressured by the President or anyone else in the Administration to influence any intelligence matters or ongoing investigations.” That is not an explicit denial that Trump asked Coats to intervene.
Comey will testify this Thursday in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee.
The former FBI Director has left a trail of additional witnesses to back up his memos: Trump is playing Checkers, Comey is playing Chess.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.