The full text of Former FBI Director James Comey‘s statement to the US Senate committee on intelligence.
The BBC has long presented the case for the prosecution against Trump declaring him a Russian agent who has tried to force the ex-FBI director to stop his investigations in to Trump’s Russia links…thus ‘obstructing justice’…impeach him!!!!
The BBC declared that the dodgy dossier on Trump was pretty much the genuine article ‘verified’ by the security services…no.
The BBC claimed that Trump wanted to stop the Russia investigation because it would lift the pressure off him…interpreted by the BBC as a sign that he was guilty. No.
The BBC gave the impression Trump himself was under investigation. No.
The BBC also told us he was possibly suffering from dementia….in a firewalled deniable article written by their US correspondent Paul Wood in the Spectator. No
This is typical of the BBC’s reporting on Trump…..
My sources say the President often fails to attend his daily intelligence briefing; when he does, his attention span is disastrously short; he’ll read only documents a page or two long which ‘must have pictures’. Some believe Twitter’s time stamps even show him tweeting during these briefings.
Trump’s critics paint a picture of the President as rambling, confused, irritable and prone to tantrums: the madness of King Donald.
Some of those critics have an explanation for this: not porphyria — the ‘blue urine’ disease that afflicted George III — but dementia.
From the same journo, Paul Wood, who produced this early biased assessment…
So did the FBI brief the President and Trump on the dodgy dossier because it was credible and ‘verified’? Not at all, the complete opposite in fact…and they did so because muck-raking journalists would publish regardless of fact in an attempt to compromise Trump….
The IC leadership thought it important, for a variety of reasons, to alert the incoming President to the existence of this material, even though it was salacious and unverified. Among those reasons were: (1) we knew the media was about to publicly report the material and we believed the IC should not keep knowledge of the material and its imminent release from the President-Elect; and (2) to the extent there was some effort to compromise an incoming President, we could blunt any such effort with a defensive briefing.
Was Trump under investigation? No.
I discussed with the FBI’s leadership team whether I should be prepared to assure President-Elect Trump that we were not investigating him personally. That was true; we did not have an open counter-intelligence case on him. We agreed I should do so if circumstances warranted. During our one-on-one meeting at Trump Tower, based on President-Elect Trump’s reaction to the briefing and without him directly asking the question, I offered that assurance.
Did Trump try to stop the investigation into General Flynn? No. He hoped Comey could let it go…but that’s a different order of things to ordering or requesting Comey to do so…it’s a hope that the investigation would come to nothing…and Comey’s account seems conveniently convenient…no witnesses, he only told people in the FBI of what was said and did not tell his ultimate boss, the Attorney General, whom he normally reports to…so again no independent witness. Note Comey sets the scene by building a case that Trump was trying to manipulate him….complete speculation and subjective conclusions…
My instincts told me that the one-on-one setting, and the pretense that this was our first discussion about my position, meant the dinner was, at least in part, an effort to have me ask for my job and create some sort of patronage relationship. That concerned me greatly, given the FBI’s traditionally independent status in the executive branch.
Note that Trump in fact asked for an investigation into the dodgy dossier…
The President returned to the salacious material I had briefed him about on January 6, and, as he had done previously, expressed his disgust for the allegations and strongly denied them. He said he was considering ordering me to investigate the alleged incident to prove it didn’t happen. I replied that he should give that careful thought because it might create a narrative that we were investigating him personally, which we weren’t, and because it was very difficult to prove a negative.
On Flynn we are told…
The President began by saying, “I want to talk about Mike Flynn.” Flynn had resigned the previous day. The President began by saying Flynn hadn’t done anything wrong in speaking with the Russians, but he had to let him go because he had misled the Vice President. He added that he had other concerns about Flynn, which he did not then specify.
The President then returned to the topic of Mike Flynn, saying, “He is a good guy and has been through a lot.” He repeated that Flynn hadn’t done anything wrong on his calls with the Russians, but had misled the Vice President. He then said, “I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go.” I replied only that “he is a good guy.” (In fact, I had a positive experience dealing with Mike Flynn when he was a colleague as Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency at the beginning of my term at FBI.) I did not say I would “let this go.”
Remember this was written up after the event with no other corroborating evidence [unless Trump taped it] and can be read subjectively depending on how you want to read it. It is not conclusive by any means that Trump was intent on ordering Comey to stop the investigation even by suggestion.
Comey has his own interpretation…
I had understood the President to be requesting that we drop any investigation of Flynn in connection with false statements about his conversations with the Russian ambassador in December….Shortly afterwards, I spoke with Attorney General Sessions in person to pass along the President’s concerns about leaks. …I did not mention that the President broached the FBI’s potential investigation of General Flynn.
Did Trump cheer the sacking of Comey because it meant the end of the investigation [it didn’t and Trump never said it would] and that it lifted the pressure off him due to that?…the BBC intepreting this as meaning he was guilty, or his team were guilty, and now wouldn’t face investigation. That’s a completely false interpretation as countered by the Whitehouse when first made…they saying that Trump was referring to his ability to conduct national affairs being marred by Comey’s behaviour not the investigation itself [not something the BBC bothered to report]….
“By grandstanding and politicizing the investigation into Russia’s actions, James Comey created unnecessary pressure on our ability to engage and negotiate with Russia,” Spicer told The Times. “The investigation would have always continued, and obviously, the termination of Comey would not have ended it. Once again, the real story is that our national security has been undermined by the leaking of private and highly classified conversations.”
Another government official who spoke to The Times said Trump was using a “negotiating tactic” with Lavrov when he explained the “pressure” he faced.
The Times wrote: “The idea, the official suggested, was to create a sense of obligation with Russian officials and to coax concessions out of Mr. Lavrov — on Syria, Ukraine, and other issues — by saying that Russian meddling in last year’s election had created enormous political problems for Mr. Trump.”
On the morning of March 30, the President called me at the FBI. He described the Russia investigation as “a cloud” that was impairing his ability to act on behalf of the country. He said he had nothing to do with Russia, had not been involved with hookers in Russia, and had always assumed he was being recorded when in Russia. He asked what we could do to “lift the cloud.” I responded that we were investigating the matter as quickly as we could, and that there would be great benefit, if we didn’t find anything, to our having done the work well. He agreed, but then re-emphasized the problems this was causing him.
Is Trump looking to close down investigations? We already know he wanted the dodgy dossier investigated and now Comey admits Trump was happy for his team to be investigated…..obstructing justice?…
The President went on to say that if there were some “satellite” associates of his who did something wrong, it would be good to find that out, but that he hadn’t done anything wrong and hoped I would find a way to get it out that we weren’t investigating him.
Far from being the Sword of Damocles this has turned out to be not even a pointy stick, just mud-slinging……if the Democrats, and the BBC, can make a case out if this I’d be surprised.
The BBC’s reporting has been entirely one-sided and highly partisan against Trump declaring him guilty without any evidence whatsoever.