Trump's Clear Intent To Influence Russian Investigation — CNN's Chris Cuomo

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Earlier Thursday, Trump tweeted that "this is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!"

A day after appointing former FBI Director Robert Mueller to lead the independent probe, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein appeared behind closed doors before the full Senate.

Once again, Trump's tweets on Thursday saw him stake out a radical departure from the official White House line on an important issue, a habit that has repeatedly undermined his press operation in recent days, and made it even more hard for his administration to move on from a string of self-imposed crises.

"There is no collusion between certainly myself and my campaign - but I can only speak for myself - and the Russians". Mr Trump wrote on Thursday morning.

Trump has consistently rejected any suggestion of collusion between his camp and Moscow as "fake news" and complained in a speech on Wednesday that he had been treated "more unfairly" than any U.S. leader in history during his fledgling presidency. Trump wrote, his anger boiling over.

"With all of the illegal acts that took place in the Clinton campaign & Obama Administration, there was never a special councel appointed!"

USA intelligence suspects that Russian President Vladimir Putin orchestrated a sweeping campaign to tilt the vote in the Republican's favor.

President Trump walks toward Marine One while departing the White House Wednesday.

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The same pattern was in evidence when he fired FBI Director James Comey last week then used a television interview to suggest he acted out of frustration with the FBI's Russian Federation probe - even though his team spent several days saying the ousting of the bureau's director had nothing to do with that issue.

President Donald Trump, striking a defiant tone on Thursday after days of political tumult, denied colluding with Russian Federation during his 2016 campaign or asking former FBI Director James Comey to drop a probe into his former national security adviser.

He also said he thought that Comey's firing would be bipartisan.

More news: EU's Tusk calls for 'mutual respect' amid election spat with UK

Mueller was director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation from 2001 to 2013, a period when he was forced to shake up a huge bureaucracy blamed for missing evidence that could have prevented the September 11, 2001 attacks.

A key issue Mueller may have to tackle is whether Trump has committed obstruction of justice, an offense that could be used in any effort in the Republican-led Congress to impeach him and remove him from office.

"We look forward to getting this whole situation behind us", he said, vowing to focus his administration's resources instead on creating jobs, strengthening the military and reforming health care.

They included media reports that Trump discussed sensitive intelligence on Islamic State with Russia's foreign minister.

The series of bombshell allegations has left Trump aides dazed and wondering about the future of his young presidency. "I hope he does (come testify), I sincerely hope he does, I'd like to hear what he has to say, but he may defer because of an ongoing criminal investigation".

He is entitled to a budget, can request new or additional staff and will have the same authority as high-ranking Justice Department lawyers, including the ability to prosecute any crimes he uncovers.

Trump's tweets signal his White House - or at least the man in charge - will try to resist Mueller's investigation, meaning the shadow of that probe will now hang over a White House in need of a morale boost.

Fighting back against multiple crises has consumed much of the political oxygen inside the White House, leaving Trump's agenda in doubt. "And then on top of that, after the Wednesday performance by Director Comey, you had a person come and have to readjust the record, which many people have never seen before, because there were misstatements made".

"It's always nice to have less drama", he said.

Some of Trump's Republican allies, like Congressman Jason Amash, have begun cautiously suggesting impeachment is no longer impossible.

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