This is a developing story.
Members of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence seemingly contradicted one another on 10 May 2017 regarding scheduled testimony by former Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) director James Comey.
Comey had been slated to appear on 11 May 2017 before being fired by President Donald Trump. Committee chair Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC), however, told reporters that Acting Director Andrew G. McCabe would appear instead, saying:
Comey was terminated last night. The chair will be filled by the acting director of the FBI.
Burr made his remarks hours after a spokesperson for a committee member told us that “no announcements” have been made regarding the former director’s scheduled appearance. However, ranking Democratic Party committee member Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA) told a Washington D.C. television station that he and Burr had invited Comey to meet with the committee on 16 May 2017 or “as soon as he can.”
The interview has not aired, but Warner reportedly said:
I would hope he would want to tell his side of the story, and I think Jim Comey could be absolutely central to where this whole investigation heads now.
We contacted Warner’s office seeking confirmation but an aide referred us to Burr’s office, which has not returned a request for comment.
The committee is investigating potential ties between Trump’s administration and the Russian government, as well as the possibility that Russian interests interfered in the 2016 election. Warner said on the day of Comey’s firing that the group had contacted the Treasury Department’s criminal investigations department for any information it had on the president and his team.
Burr said in a statement following Comey’s firing that he was “troubled by the timing and reasoning” of the termination.
Democratic lawmakers have called for a special prosecutor to be appointed to take up the investigation in the wake of Comey’s firing, but Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) rebuked that demand, saying it would “impede the current work being done.”