White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus asked the FBI to "talk to reporters on background" to dispute reports linking the Trump campaign to Russia, CNN reports. The FBI declined. A White House official said the request was made only after the FBI said the reports were questionable.
CNN does an excellent job explaining why this matters:
The direct communications between the White House and the FBI were unusual because of decade-old restrictions on such contacts. Such a request from the White House is a violation of procedures that limit communications with the FBI on pending investigations.