Published: Fri, May 19, 2017
USA | By Kelli Rowe

A timeline of events that led up to Comey's firing


He later said he was "not aware" whether any White House official had recordings of the conversation and wouldn't comment on whether the president regularly recorded conversations in the Oval Office.

The U.S. Senate's No. 2 Democrat, Richard Durbin, slammed the president after Friday's tweet about Comey.

The US president lashed out at Comey on Friday, tweeting that he 'better hope that there are no "tapes" of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!' "The tweet speaks for itself".

"He's simply stated a fact", Spicer said.

James Comey testifies in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee during an oversight hearing on the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Capitol Hill May 3, 2017 in Washington, DC.

In a statement, Durbin said that what he characterized as Trump's admission that he fired Comey because of the Russian Federation probe was "dangerously close to obstruction of justice".

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Trump said in his brief statement about firing Comey on Tuesday that the FBI chief had told him three times that he was not under investigation in the Russian Federation probe. Friends of Mr. Comey's say that that was actually not the case from his point of view. Mr. Comey couldn't be reached for comment.

Asked if Trump recorded conversations with Comey and if there are recording devices in the White House, Spicer did not give yes-or-no answers. He also reportedly said he wanted it to move ahead without pressure from the White House.

Trump, speaking to reporters that day, said that he fired Comey because Comey "wasn't doing a good job".

"The key is getting some of our Republican colleagues to join us", Schumer said.

Trump had claimed that Comey told him three times that he wasn't "under investigation".

"I thought that this would be a very popular thing, that I did, when I terminated Comey, because all of the Democrats couldn't stand him", Trump said.

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White House Correspondents' Association President Jeff Mason said Friday that "doing away with briefings would reduce accountability, transparency, and the opportunity for Americans to see that, in the US system, no political figure is above being questioned".

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, discussing the latest developments on the the Senate floor, said: "The country is being tested in unprecedented ways. And I hope that we can get Comey to come up here and testify". "Did he order Comey to end the investigation?"

The first interviews to find a replacement for fired FBI Director James Comey take place on Saturday.

"I have no evidence that the President colluded with the Russians at all", Graham said.

Sources told ABC News that Trump posed the question to Comey a couple of times during a dinner in January and Comey would not promise such a thing to the new president, only that he would be honest. But the New York Times hears word that it wasn't testifying that Comey objected to, but rather that he wants his testimony to be open to the public.

-Byron Tau contributed to this article.

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