Published: Sun, September 03, 2017
World Media | By June Phelps

Trump Drafted Letter to Comey on Why He Was Getting Fired

Trump Drafted Letter to Comey on Why He Was Getting Fired

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A letter authored by President Trump and a senior adviser detailing the president's reasoning for firing FBI Director James Comey complained that the former top cop wouldn't say publicly that Trump was not personally under investigation.

Trump's letter was prepared with the help of White House senior adviser Stephen Miller, the two people said. At the time, CNN reported that a former White House aide called Schiller, who became Trump's head of security in 2005, the "most underestimated person on Trump's team".

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Comey confirmed later that he did tell the president that three times, but said he didn't want to make that public since it could set a precedent where he would have to tell the public if that changed.

Grassley and Graham also said Comey had circulated a draft of a statement exonerating Clinton in April or early May of past year; he made his decision public July 5, 2016, three days after interviewing Clinton.

Instead, the letter circulated among White House aides and Justice Department officials the day before Comey's firing. But the "circumstances" the Trump White House cited in removing Comey never included anything about Comey going easy on Clinton.

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During the May 8 Oval Office meeting with Mr. Trump, Mr. Rosenstein was given a copy of the original letter and agreed to write a separate memo for Mr. Trump about why Mr. Comey should be fired.

Media outlets have accused the White House of giving different explanations of why Comey was sacked, but the letter - versus what Trump said in interviews later - could account for the difference in explanations. The letter outlined the reasons why Trump resolved to fire the country's top law enforcement official.

Trump's tweet was prompted by the Senate Judiciary Committee's release Thursday of excerpts from interview transcripts involving top Federal Bureau of Investigation officials, including people close to Comey. It puts the letter squarely in the context of "the circumstances surrounding Director Comey's removal, including his conduct in handling the Clinton and Russian Federation investigations".

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Trump flared up again following the release of the excerpts, posting on Twitter that Comey had exonerated Clinton months before the investigation had actually ended, ascribing it to a "rigged" political system.

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