Trump denies urging former Federal Bureau of Investigation chief to drop Flynn inquiry

Trump wrote, misspelling the word counsel as he referred to Democratic former President Barack Obama and former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

"No", he said when he was asked about the report during a White House news conference on Thursday.

"No, No. Next question", Trump told reporters.

Trump also boasted of what he saw as the "tremendous success" of his presidency.

Throughout a joint press conference with Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, Trump repeated multiple times his claim that there was no collusion between himself and Russian Federation during the campaign.

The former officials, both now in private practice, had been invited to speak at a panel on presidential power hosted by The Federalist Society, a conservative group that was key in helping Trump select and install Justice Neil Gorsuch on the U.S. Supreme Court. "I join with numerous voices - Republican and Democrat alike - who are welcoming a thorough and independent investigation based on the facts".

Asked point-blank if he'd done anything that might merit prosecution or even impeachment, Trump said no - and then added of the lingering allegations and questions: "I think it's totally ridiculous. I hope you can let this go". Adversity makes you stronger.

Trump, including one in which the president allegedly asked him to drop a probe of Flynn. Upon taking the call, Comey realized that Trump merely wanted to have casual conversation, which Comey perceived as an effort by Trump to get the FBI Director to be more loyal to the president.

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The campaign on Thursday said that it generated US$314,000 online, mostly through small donations. John McCain (R-Ariz.).

Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader of the Senate, said simply, "It would be helpful to have less drama emanating from the White House".

The person who described the Comey memo to the AP was not authorized to discuss it by name and spoke on condition of anonymity.

NBC News has verified information from the original New York Times report with two separate sources.

The White House vigorously denied it all. The White House had said Mr. Trump made the decision to fire Comey only after receiving the recommendation from Rosenstein and Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

Trump fired Flynn on February 13, on grounds that he had misled Vice President Mike Pence and other officials about his contacts with Russians.

If US President Donald Trump was hoping to head out on his first big foreign trip with turmoil calmed at home, he's going to have a disappointing Air Force One departure on Friday.

Said Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina: "He's probably glad to leave town, and a lot of us are glad he's leaving for a few days".

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