His refusal to disclose conversations between himself and the president cut off lines of inquiry about the exact circumstances surrounding Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey's firing, what may have happened in the February 14 Oval Office meeting where Trump spoke one-on-one with Comey, as well as Trump's reaction to Sessions' recusal. Sen. Coats allegedly told associates that Trump asked him to help end the investigation into Flynn, though Coats has since denied that report. Another 23 percent have no opinion on the question.
The clear post-nomination shift since previous year to more shell-company purchases is unique to sales by Trump's companies, even in his own towers and neighborhoods.
SHAPIRO: And so the question would be, was the dismissal of Comey meant to obstruct the investigation into possible collusion or Russian meddling in the 2016 campaign?
Mueller was named by Rosenstein on May 17 to lead the Russian Federation investigation as a special counsel, a position created to conduct investigations when a normal Justice Department probe would present a conflict of interest.
He also says that he is not aware whether there is a White House taping system that may have recorded Trump's one-on-one conversations with Comey, and that he has received no briefings as Attorney General on the allegations that Russian intelligence used cyberattacks to try and interfere in the 2016 elections. In one memo, Comey said Trump tried to direct him to drop an investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn.
'Will not be silenced': Sen. Kamala Harris interrupted by male colleagues again
Harris asked if the policy was written down, to which Sessions gave no clear answer but instead explained the "principle" of it. Over on CBS' Late Show , Stephen Colbert brought up Miller's treatment of Harris in his monologue about Sessions' testimony.
BARRETT: It's probably a lesser understood part of this set of investigations that as they look at various people who were associates of the president both as president and when he was a candidate, they have also been looking at the finances of those folks.
A spokesman for Trump's private attorney declined to respond to details of the widening probe Wednesday, instead slamming the leaked information as "outrageous, inexcusable and illegal". He said Comey had lied under oath, saying: "Frankly, James Comey confirmed a lot of what I said, and some of the things that he said just weren't true".
The report drew a sharp response from the President early yesterday. (That doesn't mean they won't do exactly that, of course.) We are now talking about the President of the United States being investigated for possibly obstructing justice in relation to a criminal probe about a foreign government meddling in our elections for the goal of defeating his Democratic opponent. But he said Tuesday he anticipated the conflict of interest and effectively recused himself on his first day on the job, and was never briefed on the Russian Federation investigation. "I am following the historic policies of the Department of Justice". So their findings - whatever findings Mueller might come up with would go to Congress, and then Congress would have to make decisions about whether to pursue impeachment. But you know, the president is not by any stretch an ordinary suspect or an ordinary defendant in legal terms.
SHAPIRO: Devlin Barrett of The Washington Post, thanks very much.
BARRETT: Thank you, Ari.
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