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Spicer declines to answer whether Pres. Trump records Oval Office conversations

The lawmakers urged Trump to select a new Federal Bureau of Investigation director without any political background and said the president would need to hand over to Congress any taped conversations with Comey, if they exist.

Trump also trolled the White House press corps by tweeting that he might cancel "all future" daily press briefings after his press secretary and his top deputy - as well as Vice President Mike Pence - spent 48 hours explaining his decision to fire Comey in ways that the president himself on Thursday made clear were not accurate.

"It's always the president's decision", Spicer said.

"I said, 'If it's possible, would you let me know, am I under investigation?' He said you are not under investigation, " Trump said in an interview Thursday with NBC News.

In a striking reversal one day earlier, Trump told NBC News that he planned to fire Comey even before meeting with top-ranking Justice Department officials and soliciting their recommendations on his performance.

"Mr. Comey again replied that he would give him "honesty" and did not pledge his loyalty, according to the account of the conversation", the Times reported. On Capitol Hill, acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe strongly disputed the White House's assertion that Comey had been fired in part because he had lost the confidence of the FBI's rank-and-file.

Trump's statements, through a tweet and later television interview, threaten a Washington institution that is the most high-profile forum for journalists to question the government about policy and the news of the day.

Even before Trump's provocative tweet, the White House was scrambling to clarify why Comey was sacked.

"Sean Spicer, he's a wonderful human being, he's a nice man", Trump said. I think loyalty to the country, loyalty to the U.S., is important. "Trump could not have scripted an epic fail any better than that".

Mr Comey had been leading the investigation into alleged Russian meddling in the presidential election and claims of ties between Mr Trump's associates and the Kremlin. He also, like Nixon, has grown increasingly isolated in the White House, recently relying on only a small circle of family members and loyal advisers while livid about the West Wing's failing efforts to get ahead of the damaging Russian Federation story, according to several people close to Trump. "If it wasn't a priority before, [it's] damn sure a priority now".

Trump abruptly fired Comey on Tuesday and later said Comey was a "showboat" and "grandstander" who was not doing a good job, drawing a firestorm of criticism. It was the way he did it. "It's classless, it's mean, it's offensive". The president and White House officials have also professed frustration with an investigation into possible collusion between Russian Federation and Trump's presidential campaign, which Comey as FBI director was leading. "That was pretty appalling", said Savage, who served in the agency for more than 30 years.

"You may see an internal revolt against the new director".

"All I want is for Comey to be honest - and I hope he will be".

"It's not that he fired his Federal Bureau of Investigation director", Vladeck said.

"They are not going to be pulled off an investigation if there's valid evidence there", Savage said.

Spicer did not dispute Trump's suggestion that press briefings should be canceled, saying only, "I think he's a little dismayed" by the media coverage.

And Rubincam said an investigation of this size has to run its course.

"It makes no sense to me whatsoever", he said at the time. "That would be a galactically stupid move, to try to shut down a case of that magnitude for political reasons".

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