- The Washington Times - Monday, January 14, 2019

After President Trump fired former FBI Director James B. Comey, the bureau debated if his actions were linked to Russia or if they were “completely innocent,” according to a new report from CNN that details that discussion.

The report is based on congressional interviews transcripts that CNN was able to obtain. They showed the FBI considered everything from Mr. Trump acting within his presidential authority, to him having a secret working relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

One theory former FBI general counsel James Baker told House investigators was that the president was “acting at the behest of [Russia] and somehow following directions, somehow executing their will.”

SEE ALSO: Trump slams ‘corrupt’ former FBI officials for opening spy probe of him

“The other extreme is that the President is completely innocent, and we discussed that, too,” Mr. Baker said in his congressional interview. “There’s a range of things this could possibly be. We need to investigate, because we don’t know whether, you know, the worst-case scenario is possibly true or the President is totally innocent and we need to get this thing over with — and so he can move forward with his agenda.”

The New York Times reported over the weekend that the FBI launched an investigation of the president in 2017 — the ongoing Mueller probe — because his decision to fire James Comey appeared to be potentially linked to Russian direction.

CNN also reported on details from Lisa Page, a former FBI employee that exchanged anti-Trump messages with former agent Peter Strzok, where she told investigators that the probe was considered even before Mr. Comey was fired.

Her testimony was first reported by The Epoch Times.

“We need to open the case we’ve been waiting on now while Andy [McCabe] is acting,” Mr. Strzok, who was later dismissed from the Mueller team, sent to Ms. Page.

That message was previously reported in the media back in September.

Ms. Page confirmed the case referred to the Mueller investigation, but was not necessarily contingent on who ran the FBI.

“This case had been a topic of discussion for some time. The ‘waiting on’ was an indecision and a cautiousness on the part of the bureau with respect to what to do and whether there was sufficient predication to open,” she told House investigators.

Mr. Trump railed against the former FBI officials after The New York Times report surfaced, calling them all “corrupt.”

On Monday, Mr. Trump touted low gas prices as evidence of him being tough on Russia.

“But this is bad news for Russia, why would President Trump do such a thing? Thought he worked for Kremlin?” Mr. Trump tweeted.

Sign up for Daily Newsletters

Manage Newsletters

Copyright © 2019 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

Please read our comment policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide