Published: Mon, June 05, 2017
USA | By Kelli Rowe

Trump may block Comey testimony before Senate

He has repeatedly questioned the US intelligence finding that Russian President Vladimir Putin directed an operation meant to swing the election in Trump's favor against Democratic rival Hillary Clinton.

Any attempt by the White House to block the testimony would likely have deep political consequences given that Comey was overseeing the investigation into possible collusion between members of the Trump campaign and the Russian government.

The president has said he won't prevent Comey from testifying, but some say he could still change his mind. Trump spent part of Saturday at the Trump National Golf Club outside of Washington.

When asked whether Trump was considering the option, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway told ABC News on Friday that "the President will make that decision".

The White House has denied those characterizations.

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The team which notches up five wins first progresses to the final to decide who will go on to challenge Oracle Team USA. The bonus point is another new twist. "We want to be there at the starting line next time", the French skipper added.

Mr Comey has reportedly spoken with Special Counsel Robert Mueller - who is now overseeing the Russian Federation investigation for the Justice Department - to work out what he can publicly discuss in his testimony and thereby ensure there are no legal issues. Comey will reportedly talk about pressure from Trump that he drop his investigation into former national security advisor Michael Flynn. Trump's public comments about Comey - including a series of critical tweets - would also hurt the case against executive privilege.

But the New York Times quoted the President in the memo as saying he "hoped" Lt. Gen. Flynn wasn't prosecuted because he was a "good man", to which Comey replied he agreed he was a good man. Democrats cited the report as proof of obstruction of justice, something legal experts mocked.

Comey's testimony probably will focus on the private meetings the former Federal Bureau of Investigation director had with Trump and subsequently chronicled in internal memos and recounted to associates who have divulged their contents to The Associated Press and other media outlets. Flynn was ousted on 13 February.

Another of the three sources described the process as chaotic and said that in one interview, Trump spoke mostly about himself and seemed distracted.

According to Pate, Trump can still try to invoke executive privilege. President Barack Obama used the legal authority once, during congressional inquiries after weapons ended up in the possession of Mexican gun cartels.

World forges ahead with Paris climate deal without Trump
So, what does President Trump do? Several more mayors took to Twitter to vow to uphold the obligations from the Paris Accord. However, there is a very strong consensus that human activity is the primary force shifting Earth's climate.

Presidents have often moved to keep their records and other communications with senior officials private until they leave office, on the theory that confidentiality is crucial to their ability to receive unvarnished advice on sensitive matters.

"In the context of a criminal investigation, executive privilege has to give way", said Saikrishna Prakash, who lectures on constitutional law and the separation of powers at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. He said, while he likes Mr. Comey, he believes he is "probably upset" about getting firing by President Trump.

As Comey's open hearing before the Senate Intelligence Committee looms closer, the Trump administration has sent mixed signals over whether it's looking into the possibility of invoking executive privilege to prevent Comey from disclosing the content of his conversations with Trump.

Comey was sacked last month amid his agency's probe into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians.

Former MotoGP champion Nicky Hayden dies aged 35 following cycling accident
The 35-year old American motorcycle racer was struck by a vehicle last week while he was training near the town of Rimini, Italy. Hayden remained in MotoGP full-time until 2015 but was unable to make it back to the top step of the podium again.

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