The scandal around Donald Trump firing FBI Director James Comey shows no sign of abating; the US President and White House officials voiced different versions explaining this staff decision.
On May 9, the FBI director was fired because, according to the US Administration, he mishandled the probe into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server during her term as Secretary of State.
Trump fired Comey based on the recommendation of both Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
The US President scolded Comey in a letter announcing his dismissal, stating “you are not able to effectively lead” the FBI.
In an interview with the NBC television, Trump said that he decided to fire Comey long before the US Department of Justice’s recommendations.
Meanwhile, Politico reported that explaining the reasons for Comey’s dismissal, Trump only aggravated the situation because his words ran counter to the version expressed by White House press secretary Sarah Sanders.
On May 10, she claimed that before the meeting with representatives of the Department of Justice Trump did not plan to fire Comey.
Shortly after, she retracted on her words saying that she did not have the opportunity to talk with the president before making statements, which is why she gave the information that she had at the time.
Such disagreements between Trump and the White House on the matter prompted the Democrats to put forward their own versions of what had happened.
Some suggested that Comey was fired because of an investigation into Russian hackers’ alleged interference in the US election, which some Democrats allege contributed to Trump’s victory in last year’s presidential election.
Speaking to NBC, Trump rejected all the accusations, adding that “the Democrats should be ashamed.”
According to a poll conducted by NBC News / Survey Monkey, almost 50 percent of Americans are confident that Trump fired Comey because of his participation in the probe into Russia’s alleged interference in the 2016 US presidential polls.
At the same time, 54 percent of respondents believe that the dismissal was carried out improperly, while 38 percent called the President’s decision on Comey a correct move.
The New York Times, for its part, quoted its own sources as saying that Comey’s dismissal was allegedly caused by an incident that occurred almost immediately after the new US President took office.
During a lunch at the White House in January 2017, Trump repeatedly asked Comey to confirm his loyalty, while the FBI Director allegedly said that can he only count on his honesty. The White House denied this information about the incident.
According to another version put forward by the New York Times, Trump fired Comey after he openly refuted Trump’s statements about the wiretapping of the Republican office during the election campaign.
The New York Times reported that Comey slammed similar statements as unrealistic, and that during a conversation with his assistants he allegedly described Trump as “an outside the realm of normal” and “crazy”.