US President Donald Trump told Russian officials at an Oval Office meeting last week that firing FBI Director James Comey eased pressure on him as he was a “real nut job” and “crazy”, a media report claimed today.
“I just fired the head of the FBI. He was crazy, a real nut job,” Trump told Russian Minister Sergei Lavrov and the country’s Ambassador to the US, the Times reported, citing minutes of the meeting between Trump and the Russians.
According to the US daily, the quotes and other excerpts from the minutes was readout to its correspondent by a Trump administration official.
Another on the condition of anonymity confirmed the quotes from the said document.
“I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off…I am not under investigation,” he was quoted as saying by said the daily.
The White House did not comment on the authenticity of Trump’s conversation with the Russian officials in the Oval Office on May 9.
White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told The New York Times in a statement that Comey had behaved politically and put unnecessary pressure on the president’s ability to conduct diplomacy with Russia on matters such as Syria, Ukraine and the Islamic State.
“By grandstanding and politicising the investigation into Russia’s actions, James Comey created unnecessary pressure on our ability to engage and negotiate with Russia,” Spicer said.
He said the investigation would have always continued, and the termination of Comey would not have ended it.
“Once again, the real story is that our national security has been undermined by the leaking of private and highly classified conversations,” he added.