Trump Suggests His ‘Tapes’ Threat Influenced Comey’s Testimony

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June 23, 2017 8:53 a.m.
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In an interview with “Fox and Friends” that aired Friday morning, President Donald Trump suggested that his tweet threatening that there might be “tapes” of his conversations with James Comey influenced the former FBI director’s testimony.

Trump on Thursday published a series of tweets saying that he does not have recordings of his interactions with Comey, about six weeks after he tweeted that Comey “better hope that there are no ‘tapes’ of our conversations.” But Trump also said in his tweets that there could be tapes given “all of the recently reported electronic surveillance, intercepts, unmasking and illegal leaking of information.”

He reiterated this in his interview with “Fox and Friends.”

“Well I didn’t tape him. You never know what’s happening when you see that the Obama administration and perhaps longer than that was doing all of this unmasking and surveillance, and you read all about it,” Trump said.

The President then suggested that Comey “changed” his story when he learned that there could be tapes, offering a long, confusing explanation that Comey’s “story” may have changed.

“But when he found out that I — you know, that there may be tapes out there, whether it’s governmental tapes or anything else, and who knows, I think his story may have changed. I mean, you’ll have to take a look at that,” he said. “Because then he has to tell what actually took place at the events, and my story didn’t change. My story was always a straight story. My story was always the truth. But you’ll have to determine for yourself whether or not his story changed.”

Fox News’ Ainsley Earhardt then noted it was “smart” for Trump to publish that tweet so that Comey would have to be honest.

“Well, it wasn’t— it wasn’t very stupid, I’ll tell you that. He did admit that what I said was right,” Trump replied, likely referring to Comey’s testimony that he told Trump three times that he was not under investigation. Trump revealed that Comey had told him this when he fired the FBI director.

“And if you look further back, before he heard about that, I think maybe he wasn’t admitting that,” Trump continued. “So, you’ll have to do a little investigative reporting to determine that, but I don’t think it’ll be that hard.”

Watch part of the interview via Fox News:

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