James Comey has rejected President Donald Trump’s claim that Barack Obama ordered a wiretap of his phone before he was elected president.
According to the New York Times and NBC, the FBI director reportedly asked the DoJ to publicly reject Donald Trump’s allegation.
James Comey is said to have asked for this because the allegation falsely insinuated that the FBI broke the law.
The DOJ has not commented.
It appears James Comey believed there was no evidence to support President Trump’s allegation.
The president, who faces intense scrutiny over alleged Russian interference in support of his presidential bid, made the claims in a series of tweets on March 4.
Donald Trump offered no evidence to support his allegation that phones at Trump Tower were tapped during his campaign.
White House press secretary Sean Spicer went on to say there had been “very troubling” reports “concerning potentially politically motivated investigations immediately ahead of the 2016 election”.
All the evidence indicates the answer is no. A spokesman for former President Barack Obama said Donald Trump’s allegation charge was “simply false”.
A warrant, if it existed, would most likely have been ordered by the DoJ independently of the White House.
The only way Barack Obama could have ordered surveillance without going through the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court is if there was no US citizens involved.
In this case, considering the target is allegedly Trump Tower in New York – which would definitely have involved American citizens – this would have been hard to argue.
James Clapper, who was director of national intelligence under President Obama, has categorically denied a FISA court order existed.
Leading Democrats have called on the White House to produce evidence to support Donald Trump’s claim.
Meanwhile, the White House has called on Congress to investigate whether the Obama administration had abused its powers.
Both Congress and the FBI are currently investigating contacts between the Trump election campaign and Russian officials, after US intelligence agencies assessed that Russia had interfered with the election to help Donald Trump win against his Hillary Clinton.