THURMONT, Md. — The Latest on the investigation into Russian election meddling (all times local):
President Donald Trump says he’s done nothing wrong when it comes to the special counsel’s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election.
A number of news outlets, including The Associated Press, have reported that Trump directed his White House counsel to tell Attorney General Jeff Sessions not to withdraw from the Justice Department’s investigation into potential ties between Russia and the Trump campaign. Sessions’ withdrawal prompted Robert Mueller’s appointment as special counsel.
Trump tells reporters at Camp David Saturday the New York Times story first reporting the request was “way off, or at least off” — though he wouldn’t say how.
He says, “Everything I’ve done was 100 percent proper.”
Trump also tried to make the case again that “there’s been no collusion” and “no crime.” He says the investigation is “very, very bad for our county” and making “our country look foolish.”
Despite his anger over Sessions’ withdrawal from the probe, Trump says he stands by Sessions.
Special counsel Robert Mueller may have another avenue to explore as his team tries to untangle potential evidence of obstruction in connection with the probe of Russian election meddling.
Whether Donald Trump’s actions as president constitute an effort to impede the probe by the former FBI director is already getting a close look. Now comes the revelation that Trump asked his White House counsel to tell Attorney general Jeff Sessions not to recuse himself from the Russia investigation.
Three people familiar with the matter confirm to The Associated Press that the counsel, Don McGahn, spoke with Sessions just before Sessions announced his recusal to urge him not to do so. One of the people says McGahn contacted Sessions at the president’s behest.