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June 20, 2017

Trump lawyer denies that the president is under investigation

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    • On June 14, 2017, the Washington Post reported that President Donald Trump was personally under investigation for possible obstruction of justice by special counsel Robert Mueller after the firing of former FBI Director James Comey. Comey headed the agency that was overseeing the investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and potential collusion with the Trump campaign.
    • The president appeared to confirm the reports two days later with the following tweet:

  • However, Jay Sekulow, a member of Trump’s legal team and chief counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice, claimed that Trump was not under investigation and had not been provided with any indication from the special counsel that he was under investigation. He said that he believed the Washington Post report to be false.
  • In response to the president’s comments several weeks ago that he had the “Russia thing” in mind when he fired Comey and that the firing relieved great pressure, Sekulow said that it was a “normal deliberative process.” He elaborated that the “Russia situation” was a “witch hunt” and that no evidence of collusion had been found.

  1. Essential question: How are ongoing investigations and scandals affecting the Trump presidency?
  2. Given James Comey’s role in the Russia investigation, how and why could his firing by Trump lead to an investigation for obstruction of justice?
  3. How does the amount of media attention focused on the Russia investigation affect Trump’s ability to enact his agenda?
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