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Furious Trump blasts Comey sacking probe 'witch hunt'

19 June 2017

Robert Mueller, special counsel for the inquiry into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, has not yet chose to investigate President Donald Trump for obstruction of justice, ABC's senior justice correspondent Pierre Thomas reports.

Rosenstein wrote a memo last month noting concerns about Comey's handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation that the White House initially used to justify the removal of the FBI director.

A member of the president's outside legal team said Sunday that Donald Trump is not under investigation, days after Trump tweeted about being the target of a "witch hunt".

Reports have alleged that Trump asked both men to publicly quash the credibility of the Russian Federation investigation.

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Tensions are building inside the Justice Department as Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein contemplates whether he will become a witness in the ongoing investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. elections.

The president has denied that he has any nefarious ties to Russian Federation and has also disputed that he's attempted to block the investigation into his campaign's possible role in Russia's election-related hacking. Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from the investigation, and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein appointed Robert Mueller to oversee it in the wake of Comey's ouster.

Mr Trump's tweets came after the top lawyer for his transition team warned the organisation's officials to preserve all records and other materials related to the Russian Federation probe.

Yesterday, Trump referred to the possible obstruction of justice investigation as the "single greatest witch hunt in American political history".

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Comey testified last week that he also felt pressured to drop the Flynn probe.

His tweets come as Mr Trump marks two years since announcing his plan to run for president. Gingrich questioned Mueller's relationship to Comey.

Earlier this week, the investigation led by Mueller appeared to move closer to Trump. One adviser said the comments trashing Mueller and Rosenstein from Trump and others "should not be viewed as just a pure coincidence". But Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, said he wants his panel to probe obstruction of justice. He is also said to blurt out "I'm not under investigation" in conversation with staffers and associates. He testified that he leaked information about the notes through a friend to the Times to increase pressure for the appointment of a special prosecutor after he concluded Trump's administration "defamed" him and the Federal Bureau of Investigation after his May 9 firing.

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