Earlier on Friday, President Donald Trump refused to give a clear-cut answer on whether he was considering firing Rosenstein after Trump approved the declassification of a memo that alleges FBI abuses its authority regarding Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrants.
In the wake of the memo's release, Comey tweeted, "That's it?" Yet a coordinated effort to oust Rosenstein is a chilling potential consequence because of what it might mean not just for the Trump-Russia investigation, but for the independence of the Justice Department.
In a Saturday morning tweet, Trump denied any collusion or obstruction and called the investigation "an American disgrace". This happened at a secret court to get a secret warrant to spy on an American citizen during a presidential campaign.
"This memo totally vindicates 'Trump' in probe", the president tweeted Saturday.
In his video to FBI employees Friday, Wray said he is "continually inspired by what you do on a daily basis to keep people safe".
The Justice Department continued the surveillance after Trump was elected, according to the memo. "I stand with you, and while there's no shortage of opinions about us right now, nobody has the same vantage point on the FBI that I do".
The ad claims that Rosenstein's "incompetence and abuse of power" have "undermined congressional investigations" and tarnished the reputation of the Justice Department.
The memo fight takes place as attorneys for Trump and Mueller negotiate possible testimony from the president. But it does reveal the FBI investigation actually began in July 2016, months before the warrant was even sought, based on information involving a separate Trump aide, George Papadopoulos, who has already pleaded guilty to federal charges.
Mueller inherited the probe in May 2017. "A lot of people should be ashamed of themselves". "What's going on in this country, I think it's a disgrace".
Page first came onto the FBI radar several years ago, well before Trump announced his latest candidacy, because suspected Russian spies in New York City were overheard saying they wanted to recruit Page as an intelligence asset. "Rank & File are great people".
A number of other Democrats echoed similar sentiments. Axios reports that though the initial reach of the ad is small for now - "a six-figure spend on digital and TV in Washington D.C." - it is being passed around conservative circles.
The Republicans argue that top Justice and FBI officials concealed relevant information from the court, namely the full details of Steele's motivations and funding. Steele didn't begin work on the project until after Democratic groups took over the funding. They say the memo ignores the fact the investigation did not begin with Steele. The memo describes him as having told the committee that no surveillance warrant would have been sought without the dossier.
The memo release escalates a clash with the man Trump picked to lead the FBI, Christopher Wray, after firing James Comey as agency director.
Comey weighed in on Twitter, calling the memo "dishonest and misleading" and saying it had "inexcusably exposed classified investigation of an American citizen".
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