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Andrew Harnik / AP

President Trump fielded questions on James Comey while giving a joint press conference with Romanian President Klaus Werner Iohannis at the White House Friday. Trump told reporters that he felt completely vindicated by Comey's testimony, stating that there was "no collusion, no obstruction, he's a leaker."

When asked whether he recorded the conversations he had with Comey, Trump said, "I'll tell you about that sometime in the near future." He also denied ever asking for Comey's loyalty or asking him to "let Flynn go." And he said he'd "100%" be willing to testify under oath to Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller.

President Trump on Comey:

  • Trump on Comey tapes: "I'll tell you about that sometime in the near future." He later added, "you'll be very disappointed when you hear the answer."
  • Why do you feel vindicated by Comey's testimony? "No collusion, no obstruction, he's a leaker... we are doing really well, that was an excuse by the Democrats who lost the election... we were very happy and frankly James Comey confirmed a lot of what I said, and some of the things just weren't true."
  • Did you ask Comey to "let Flynn go"? "I didn't say that .... and there'd be nothing wrong with that if I did say it, according to everybody that I read today."
  • Denies asking for Comey's loyalty: "I hardly know the man, who would do that, who would ask him to pledge allegiance under oath."
  • Would you be willing to testify under oath to Special Counsel Robert Mueller? "100 percent."

President Trump on Foreign Affairs:

  • Article 5: "I am committing the U.S. to Article 5." Note: Trump failed to openly state he was committed to Article 5, the principle that all members are committed to collective defense and that an attack on one ally is considered as an attack against all allies, while in Brussels.
  • Qatar: "It is time to call on Qatar to end its funding of terrorism and extremist ideology... I want other countries to stop teaching people to kill other people... we ask Qatar and other nations in the region to do more, and do it faster."
  • NATO: "Because of our actions, the money is starting to pour into NATO... other countries are starting to realize it is time to pay up, and I am very proud of that."

President Iohannis:

  • NATO: "I'm very glad that, thanks to your strong leadership, Nato decided to go against terrorism and countries are sharing the burden... I hope we find ways together to make good use of this money."
  • E.U.: "I think its in your best interest MR President to have a strong relationship with the European Union... NATO and the European union do not have to compete against each other. They have to work together."
  • Thoughts on Trump's Brussels speech: "I was in Brussels and I listened to President Trump's speech, and I liked it."

Go deeper

Senate confirms retired Gen. Lloyd Austin as defense secretary

Photo: Greg Nash-Pool/Getty Images

The Senate voted 93-2 on Friday to confirm retired Gen. Lloyd Austin as secretary of defense. Sens. Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) were the sole "no" votes.

Why it matters: Austin is the first Black American to lead the Pentagon and President Biden's second Cabinet nominee to be confirmed.

House will transmit article of impeachment to Senate on Monday, Schumer says

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) announced that the House will deliver the article of impeachment against former President Trump for "incitement of insurrection" on Monday.

Why it matters: The Senate is required to begin the impeachment trial at 1pm the day after the article is transmitted.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Private equity bets on delayed tax reform in Biden administration

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

In normal times, private equity would be nervous about Democratic Party control of both the White House and Congress. But in pandemic-consumed 2021, the industry seems sanguine.

Driving the news: Industry executives and lobbyists paid very close attention to Treasury Secretary nominee Janet Yellen's confirmation hearings this week, and came away convinced that tax reform isn't on the near-term agenda.