Trump appears to confirm he’s under probe, slams it as witch hunt

17-06-2017
DH

"I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director (James Comey) by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt," Trump said in an early morning tweet.

Trump’s apparent confirmation that he is under probe for obstruction of justice by special counsel appointed to probe alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential polls came a day after a Washington Post report pointed to such an investigation.

The probe by special counsel Robert Mueller, a former FBI chief, "marks a major turning point in the nearly year-old FBI investigation, which until recently focused on Russian meddling during the presidential campaign and on whether there was any coordination between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin," The Washington Post had reported.

Trump did not respond to shouted questions from the media as he was leaving the White House lawns to board Marine One for the Joint Andres Air Force Base for his day-long trip to Florida.

"Despite the phony Witch Hunt going on in America, the economic and jobs numbers are great. Regulations way down, jobs and enthusiasm way up!" said the US President in another tweet.
He accused the mainstream American media for allegedly spreading wrong news.

"The Fake News Media hates when I use what has turned out to be my very powerful Social Media -- over 100 million people! I can go around them," Trump said.

In the past, he has frequently used the term ’Fake News Media’ for outlets like The New York Times, The Washington Post and CNN.

"After 7 months of investigations and committee hearings about my ’collusion with the Russians’, nobody has been able to show any proof. Sad!" Trump said in his first tweet of the day.

A day earlier, Trump had questioned why his general election rival Hillary Clinton was not being investigated.
"Why is that Hillary Clintons family and Dems dealings with Russia are not looked at, but my non-dealings are?" Trump questioned.

"Crooked Hillary destroyed phones with hammer, ’bleached’ emails, and had husband meet with Attorney General days before she was cleared -- and they talk about obstruction?" he had said.

The Post reported that the obstruction of justice investigation of the president began days after James Comey was fired as the FBI Director on May 9.

Mueller is overseeing a host of investigations involving people who are or were in Trump’s orbit, people familiar with the probe were quoted as saying.

Significantly, Preet Bharara, the India-born former top US federal prosecutor, earlier this week had said that there was enough evidence to begin an obstruction of justice case against Trump over his alleged interference in the Russia probe.

Trump has said he is "100 per cent" willing to testify under oath on Comey meetings and tell the FBI Special Consul Robert Muller that he never asked FBI to stop investigating.

In a statement, Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein said she is growing increasingly concerned that the president will attempt to fire not only Mueller, but also Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein who appointed Mueller.

"The message the president is sending through his tweets is that he believes the rule of law doesn’t apply to him and that anyone who thinks otherwise will be fired. That is undemocratic on its face and a blatant violation of the president’s oath of office," she said.

Feinstein said the president has no authority to fire Mueller. "That authority clearly lies with the attorney general or in this case, because the attorney general has rescued himself, with the deputy attorney general. Rosenstein testified under oath this week that he would not fire Mueller without good cause and that none exists.


"And second, if the president thinks he can fire Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein and replace him with someone who will shut down the investigation, he is in for a rude awakening. Even his staunchest supporters will balk at such a blatant effort to subvert the law," she said in a strongly worded statement.

Feinstein said, "it is becoming clear to me that the president has embarked on an effort to undermine anyone with the ability to bring any misdeeds to light, be that Congress, the media or the Justice Department".

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