Trump denies asking Comey to end Flynn investigation

Trump lashed out in the morning on Twitter at the news that the Justice Department appointed a special prosecutor, former FBI director Robert Mueller, to oversee the investigation, calling the move a politically motivated "witch hunt" by his Democratic rivals.

The White House was already reeling from the allegation that Trump asked Comey to drop the Flynn investigation, the revelation that the president may have inadvertently passed sensitive intelligence to two top Russian officials in the Oval Office and a suggestion he made that he might be secretly recording his conversations.

"We need a great director of the FBI", Trump said.

"Trump feels really, really, really, bad about firing him, and he genuinely thinks if the investigation is over Flynn can come back", said one White House official.

The remarks will be Trump's first live, on-camera remarks since Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein tapped Robert Mueller to be a special counsel overseeing the Justice Department's Russian Federation probe. Santos is expected to ask Mr. Trump, who is making cuts to foreign aid, to renew funding to support a peace agreement between the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces.

Throughout a joint press conference with Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, Trump repeated multiple times his claim that there was no collusion between himself and Russian Federation during the campaign. "I think it shows division, and it shows that we're not together as a country".

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The FBI's reputation, he said, had been damaged during the presidential campaign, given "what happened with respect to the Clinton campaign".

On the subject of the allegations - started in July 2016 by the Hillary Clinton campaign and embraced by Democrats and some of the media since her surprise defeat in November - that he and his campaign colluded with Russia, Trump said that "the entire thing has been a witch hunt".

Trump also announced Thursday that he was "very close" to naming Comey's successor as Federal Bureau of Investigation director, with ex-Democratic Senator Joe Lieberman expected to fill the post.

"I know Congressman Green to be a thoughtful, principled man, one who chooses his words carefully and doesn't shoot from the hip on important issues such as the defense of our democracy". "I hope you can let this go", the United States president was quoted as telling Comey in the report.

"You get a lot of comments where people say, 'I hear you that you're concerned - now what are you going to do about it?'" Sanford said.

The intensifying drama comes as Trump is set to embark Friday on his first foreign trip, which had been optimistically viewed by some aides as an opportunity to reset an administration floundering under an inexperienced president.

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