President Trump demanded “loyalty” from former FBI Director James B. Comey and asked him to drop at least part of the bureau’s investigation of former National Security Adviser Mike Flynn, Comey plans to testify to Congress Thursday.
In a prepared statement posted on the Senate Intelligence Committee website, Comey says that in a private dinner with Trump on Jan. 27, the president asked him if he wanted to remain as head of the FBI and told him “I need loyalty, I expect loyalty.”
“I didn’t move, speak, or change my facial expression in any way during the awkward silence that followed. We simply looked at each other in silence,” Comey says. He told Trump that he could promise “honesty,” he says.
Sen. Ron Wyden: Comey’s testimony describes "almost a Watergate-level effort to interfere” with the investigation https://t.co/CIMcqnUWZF
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) June 7, 2017
When Trump responded “honest loyalty,” Comey said “you will get that from me.” The two men may have “understood the phrase ‘honest loyalty’ differently,” he said.
The testimony, largely confirms media reports about the content of memos that Comey wrote after his meetings with Trump.
But going beyond those previous accounts, the testimony, describing nine one-on-one conversations between Comey and Trump paints a picture of a president intensely focused on having the FBI publicly say that he, personally, was not under investigation.