Would Trump request to end Flynn probe have broken law?

May 18, 2017, 00:34

Sen. Angus King told CNN Tuesday that if President Trump did ask former FBI Director James Comey to drop an investigation of the president's former security adviser, it could constitute obstruction of justice, an impeachable offense.

Mr Samuel Buell, a former federal prosecutor who led the Justice Department's Enron task force and now teaches criminal law at Duke University, was initially sceptical about whether the mere firing of Mr Comey could prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Mr Trump had an improper mental state.

Fitzgibbons tells ABC Action News, that includes the shocking request reported by the New York Times.

The New York Times said that during the Oval Office meeting, Trump condemned a series of government leaks to the news media and said the Federal Bureau of Investigation director should consider prosecuting reporters for publishing classified information.

"I hope you can let this go", he said, according to the memo.

'He is a good guy. "I think it requires somebody like me, a Republican, to call Comey before the Judiciary Committee to let him explain that conversation".

- Republican Representative Jason Chaffetz, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, on Twitter.

Leftist politicians are hurling obstruction-of-justice claims around and even talking about impeachment only four months into Trump's presidency.

The White House denied the version of events in the memo, saying, "While the president has repeatedly expressed his view that General Flynn is a decent man who served and protected our country, the president has never asked Mr. Comey or anyone else to end any investigation, including any investigation involving General Flynn".

"If these reports are true, the president's brazen attempt to shut down the FBI's investigation of Michael Flynn is an assault on the rule of law that is fundamental to our democracy".

North Korea on "Maximum Alert"
Despite these warnings from the U.S., North Korean officials have not shown any signs of stepping back from their nuclear tests. Officials and experts, however, claimed that no nation has mastered the necessary technology to follow through with the threat.

European Commission raises Polish GDP growth forecast
The updated growth estimates are included in the Commission's formal Spring Economic Forecast. That is compared with predictions made in the winter of 1.6% growth in 2017 and 1.8% in 2018.

Tunnel with nuclear waste collapses in Washington state
Hanford, which is roughly half the size of Rhode Island, spent decades making plutonium for the nation's nuclear weapons arsenal. Its last reactor closed down in 1987 but millions of gallons of leftover waste are contained in tanks at the site.

A source said the encounter between Comey and Trump unfolded after the then FBI Director was in the Oval Office briefing Trump along with Vice President Mike Pence and Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Bullion advanced for a fifth straight day as investors cut back on risk, with President Donald Trump's administration embroiled in controversy after controversy and the dollar sinking to the lowest since November.

But the president took to Twitter to insist he had the "absolute right" to share "facts pertaining.to terrorism and airline flight safety" with Russian Federation. "I think right now the focus should be on getting the evidence and getting a special prosecutor appointed".

"Our nation is being tested in unprecedented ways. I say to all of my colleagues in the Senate, history is watching", said top Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer.

And veteran Republican Senator John McCain called the allegations about the Trump-Lavrov meeting "deeply disturbing".

Indeed, as president he did have the legal authority to declassify and share the information at will. The associates revealed the information to The Post on condition of anonymity.

Trump later tweeted that because he is so active, "it is not possible for my surrogates to stand at [a] podium with ideal accuracy" and represent the White House's line of thinking, appearing to discredit his press office and administration officials.

Both American presidents who were subjected to impeachment proceedings in the last century - Mr Bill Clinton in 1998 and Mr Richard Nixon in 1974 - were accused of obstruction of justice.

Article II of the Constitution provides for removal of the President from office "on impeachment for, and conviction of, treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors". Although Pelosi's name was invoked four times at various levels of ridicule and blame, neither the speaker, Handel, nor NRCC Chairman Steve Stivers mentioned President Trump's name even once. "He wasn't briefed on the source or method of the information either". There was some talk over the weekend of Trump himself wanting to clear house, but that's not what I'm talking about. Comey created several memos of encounters with Trump to ensure that a record would exist of conversations he found odd or troubling, according to the person.

Media reports of the Comey memo prompted members of Congress to renew calls for an independent investigation into the Trump campaign's possible connections to Russian Federation and for Comey to testify before Congress.

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