President Trump’s highly controversial meeting with Russian officials just a day after firing former FBI Director James Comey was not just bad optics, it was also where the boastful, blustering president made some striking revelations.
Days after it was revealed that Trump showed off about the intelligence he had by passing on highly classified information which was supposed to be shielded from the Russians, it now comes out that the President also boasted about firing Comey.
In a bombshell report by the New York Times, based on an official White House document that summarized the May 10 meeting, Trump bragged that he had fired Comey and that it had given him great reprieve over the Russia investigation.
“I just fired the head of the FBI,” Trump said, according to the document. “He was crazy, a real nut job … I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off.” Trump also added that “I’m not under investigation.”
The conversation is another piece of evidence that Comey was dismissed mainly because of the fact that he was heading the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election and Trump associates’ connections to it. Trump all but admitted to this during an interview with NBC’s Lester Holt which was televised on the same day as the meeting with Russian officials.
The document — which is based on notes taken from inside the Oval Office and which has been circulated as the official summary of the meeting — was read to the Times reporters by a U.S. official. It was also confirmed by a second official.
In a statement, the White House did not dispute the accuracy of the New York Times reporting:
“By grandstanding and politicizing the investigation into Russia’s actions, James Comey created unnecessary pressure on our ability to engage and negotiate with Russia,” Spicer said. “The investigation would have always continued, and obviously, the termination of Comey would not have ended it. Once again, the real story is that our national security has been undermined by the leaking of private and highly classified conversations.”