In surprise move, Trump fires Federal Bureau of Investigation director

Edward Snowden lives in exile in Russia after quitting the National Security Agency in 2013 and revealing some of its surveillance secrets

Edward Snowden lives in exile in Russia after quitting the National Security Agency in 2013 and revealing some of its surveillance secrets

"This is nothing less than Nixonian", said US Senator Patrick Leahy, who called Trump's justification for firing Comey "absurd". The people recounting the behind-the-scenes activity spoke only on condition of anonymity to disclose private discussions.

"Sir, I can't comment on any conversations the Director may have had with the President", McCabe answered.

The investigation has shadowed Trump from the outset of his presidency, though he's denied any ties to Russian Federation or knowledge of campaign coordination with Moscow.

But for weeks, the Russian Federation investigation has not appeared to be going away.

McCabe assured Warner that he would alert the committee if anyone tried to influence the Federal Bureau of Investigation probe into possible ties between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign.

Trump's aides and spokespersons tripped over each other in trying to explain and rationalize the President's decision amid explosive disclosures that surfaced by the hour on Wednesday and Thursday.

Democrats, who bayed for Mr Comey's blood a year ago after he announced a fresh probe into presidential candidate Ms Clinton's alleged breaches of national security just weeks before the election, rushed to the sacked spook's defence. The Justice Department denies there was such a request.

Some allies had been warning Trump since before his inauguration to get rid of Comey, describing him as a Republican who would criticize and do in fellow Republicans, according to one Trump associate.

"These are meetings that have been on the books for awhile", Sanders said. Yet calls for an independent investigation into the Trump-Russia accusations have grown since Trump's election, from both sides of the aisle, including leading Republicans such as Vista Rep. Trump asked them to put those concerns and their recommendation in writing, Sanders said.

A senior White House official said former Republican congressman Mike Rogers is being considered as a candidate to replace FBI Director James Comey, who was sacked late on Tuesday by President Donald Trump.

Wednesday, Democrats predictably renewed calls for an investigation while Republicans such as South Carolina Sen. Chuck Schumer, a fellow New Yorker, to relay the stunning news that he was firing Comey. There are a lot of sources of political power in the American system, and those civic institutions will fiercely resist any attempt to remake them into hand-crafted tools of Dear Leader's whims. Trump, "taken aback", ignored his sound advice. Apparently the White House had expected Democrats to largely welcome the decision, given their outrage over Comey's handling of the Clinton email investigation.

"That Comey had lost the confidence of nearly everyone in Washington and saying when things calm down they will be be thanking me".

While Comey has drawn anger from Democrats since he reopened the email investigation in the closing days of last year's campaign, they didn't buy that justification for his firing.

Yet as recently as last week, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said Trump had "confidence" in Comey.

Acting FBI director Andrew McCabe assured the Senate intelligence committee Thursday that the investigation would continue unabated. That FBI probe was the only one considered to be free of influence by the Trump administration because of the partisan nature and prior actions of congressional leaders overseeing two other probes in the House and Senate.

Television screens in the Los Angeles field office began flashing the news as he spoke, and he initially chuckled.

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