Report: Trump exploded at Justice Department over Russia probe
President Trump "erupted in anger" during his Air Force One flight to Davos at the news "Associate Attorney General Stephen Boyd warned [the House Intelligence Committee in a letter] that it would be 'extraordinarily reckless' to release a classified memo" written by House Republicans, Bloomberg reports. The memo alleges that the FBI used the Trump/Russia dossier to obtain FISA wiretaps against American citizens.
The backdrop, via Bloomberg: For Trump, the move was "another example of the Justice Department undermining him and stymieing Republican efforts to expose what the president sees as the politically motivated agenda behind Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe."
More on Trump's thinking...
- "Several people close to Trump insist he isn’t preparing to fire Wray, Sessions or other senior officials."
- "But the Justice Department’s decision to send the Boyd letter to the House Intelligence Committee last week has intensified Trump’s concern that his own department is undercutting him."
- "The president is frustrated that Justice Department officials keep getting involved in issues related to the probe when they don’t need to, leading him to wonder if anyone was trying to protect people implicated in the Nunes memo."
- "Kelly held separate meetings or phone calls with senior Justice Department officials last Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday to convey Trump’s displeasure and lecture them on the White House’s expectations."
- "Kelly has taken to ending such conversations with a disclaimer that the White House isn’t expecting officials to do anything illegal or unethical."
On reports that Trump ordered Mueller fired: "Trump was surprised by Mueller’s appointment, saying that he had previously had a business dispute with the special counsel, and reacted angrily until McGahn calmed him down."