A timeline of events that led up to Comey's firing

The good news for historians is that if such tapes do exist, the Trump administration is required by law to preserve these presidential records and turn them over to the National Archives and Records Administration. But Comey's colleagues told The New York Times instead that Trump pressed Comey at the dinner for a "loyalty" pledge to the president and that Comey refused.

The threat to expose Comey was probably a reference to a claim that the president made in the May 9 termination letter that he sent the Federal Bureau of Investigation director.

"James Comey better hope that there are no "tapes" of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!" the president tweeted. (When asked whether he was "moving so quickly" that his own communications department couldn't keep up with him, Trump responded with a forceful "Yes.") His solution?

Spicer was absent from the Wednesday and Thursday press briefings, in arguably some of the most critical days of Trump's presidency so far.

Here's why Trump's take is misleading.

Meanwhile, as Rosenstein huddled with Intelligence Committee leaders, NBC released an interview in which Trump said the decision to oust Comey was his.

Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said he supports calls to block the appointment of a new FBI director until a special prosecutor is named to oversee the Russian meddling investigation. Each has worked in high-profile positions in the Justice Department.

Sources with knowledge of the situation emphasized that they do not believe Comey would have spoken about the Russian Federation probe with Trump under any circumstances. She left after about an hour-and-a half inside the building and declined to comment to reporters. "All I want is for Comey to be honest". "We need to get the President outside the beltway", someone close to the White House explained to CNN.

Mr Trump said in an interview with television network NBC that the Russian Federation investigation factored into his decision to fire Mr Comey.

More news: Hustle is the key to Wizards playing better at home

During a week in which some observers likened Trump's behavior to Richard Nixon, whose abuses of power were captured by a secret taping system that eventually led to his resignation, the president's mention of "tapes" and then his refusal to deny taping people in the White House was stunning. He said Mr Comey had requested the dinner because he wanted to keep his Federal Bureau of Investigation job. Both permit "one-party consent" recording, that is, recordings made when only one party to the conversation okays it - which in this hypothetical case would be Trump.

"As a very active President with lots of things happening, it is not possible for my surrogates to stand at podium with ideal accuracy!", the president tweeted.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions and his deputy, Rod Rosenstein conducted the interviews.

"What needs to happen here is to clear this cloud that's hanging over the administration, over the president, the White House", he said. "The president's made a determination ... we don't have the luxury of picking who we work with".

Trump told Fox News he was surprised by the fierce reaction of Democrats.

Asked about his colleague Cornyn, Graham said, "It's now time to pick someone who comes from within the ranks or has such a reputation that has no political background at all that can go into the job on day one".

Comey had angered Democrats over his handling of the probe of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server while she was secretary of state.

The Illinois lawmaker asked for confirmation of any taping system in any location, and any tapes or recordings of White House conversations, particularly with Comey, former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, whom Trump fired on February 13, and with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

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