Tape-gate firestorm hits FBI
RAGING against a political firestorm, President Donald Trump shot a sharp warning at his ousted FBI director about possible “tapes” of their disputed private conversations, raising the provocative possibility that recording devices have been installed in the White House.
Mr Trump tweeted that ousted James Comey should hope “there are no ‘tapes’ of our conversations.”
He later said in an interview that he couldn’t, and wouldn’t, talk about any possible tape recordings. “All I want is for Comey to be honest. And I hope he will be,” he said.
His remarks followed earlier statements that Comey gave him three separate assurances that he was not under investigation.
White House press secretary Sean Spicer declined to discuss whether listening devices were active in the Oval Office or elsewhere, a non-denial that recalled the secretly taped conversations and telephone calls that ultimately led to President Richard Nixon’s downfall in the Watergate scandal. Democrats quickly seized on the dispute, demanding the White House turn over any tapes that might exist of the President’s conversations with Comey.
“(President) Trump’s behaviour raises “the spectre of possible intimidation and obstruction of justice,” John Conyers and Elijah Cummings, Democrats on the House Judiciary and Oversight committees, wrote in a letter to White House Counsel Don McGahn.