Former FBI Director James Comey’s prepared testimony has been posted to the Senate Intelligence Committee’s webpage, and it contains several new details about interactions between himself and President Donald Trump.
Below are the six biggest revelations from Comey’s upcoming testimony that’s slated to occur on Capitol Hill on Thursday.
1.) Comey had nine separate private conversations with Trump during a span of only four months. In contrast, Comey said he only spoke privately with former President Barack Obama twice during his time in office.”I spoke alone with President Obama twice in person (and never on the phone) — once in 2015 to discuss law enforcement policy issues and a second time, briefly, for him to say goodbye in late 2016,” Comey wrote. In neither of those circumstances did I memorialize the discussions. I can recall nine one-on-one conversations with President Trump in four months – three in person and six on the phone.”
2.) Trump told Comey repeatedly that he “expected loyalty” — and wouldn’t easily take “no” for an answer. Comey says things got awkward quickly at a January 27 dinner he had with the president in which Trump demanded Comey’s loyalty. “A few moments later, the President said, “I need loyalty, I expect loyalty,'” Comey wrote. “I didn’t move, speak, or change my facial expression in any way during the awkward silence that followed. We simply looked at each other in silence. The conversation then moved on, but he returned to the subject near the end of our dinner.”
3.) Trump specifically told Comey that he had no involvement with Russian prostitutes. Reacting to an unverified intelligence report that Trump had been filmed hiring several prostitutes to perform a “golden shower” in a Russian hotel room, Trump specifically told Comey that such a thing had never happened.”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,” Comey wrote.
4.) Despite this, Trump asked Comey if he could somehow prove that the “golden shower” incident never happened. Despite his insistence that the Russian prostitute story was false, Trump wanted Comey to publicly confirm that it was faulty intelligence.”He said he was considering ordering me to investigate the alleged incident to prove it didn’t happen,” Comey wrote. “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.”
5.) Trump admitted the possibility that “satellite” associates might have done something wrong. Although Trump has insisted that the Russia investigation is a “witch hunt,” he at one point told Comey that it will still be good to know if people who associated with him had done something illegal.”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,” Comey wrote.
6.) In their final conversation before Comey’s firing, Trump implored Comey to publicly state that he was not under investigation. Comey actually did tell Trump on several occasions that he was not currently under investigation by the FBI. Comey was reluctant to say this publicly, however, because doing so would require a public correction if the FBI investigation ever did shift to Trump.The president, however, wanted him to go public.
“On the morning of April 11, the President called me and asked what I had done about his request that I ‘get out’ that he is not personally under investigation,” Comey wrote. “I replied that I had passed his request to the Acting Deputy Attorney General, but I had not heard back. He replied that “the cloud” was getting in the way of his ability to do his job.”