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Statements from Michigan delegates on latest Trump/Comey developments

Capitol Hill
Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

In case you haven’t heard, it's been a crazy few days in Washington. A number of breaking stories have come out related to President Donald Trump, now ex-FBI director James Comey, former national security adviser Michael Flynn, and Russia.

The latest development broke late Tuesday, when the New York Times reported that Comey kept notes and memos of his private meetings with Trump. Those memos allegedly claim that the president asked Comey to stop the federal investigation into Flynn.

Many D.C. legislators are speaking out, including Michigan’s delegates.

A (somewhat) brief summary of events

Last Tuesday, President Donald Trump fired FBI Director James Comey, claiming in his dismissal letter that he believed Comey mishandled the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails.

In a television interview two days later, the president denied that he fired Comey because of the FBI’s Russia investigation. Despite that, Trump said, ‘‘In fact when I decided to just do it, I said to myself, I said you know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story.’’

In addition, Trump admitted to asking Comey if he was being investigated by the FBI, and said Comey denied any such investigation. FBI officials have refuted that statement.

On Tuesday night, the New York Times reported the existence of a memo written by Comey immediately after a February meeting with Trump. The memo says Trump asked Comey to stop looking into ties between Russia and Flynn.

And on a separate but related topic, the Washington Post reported Monday that President Trumprevealed highly sensitive classified information to Russian diplomats the day after firing Comey.

This entire story has been taking dramatic twists by the hour, and many in Congress are beginning to cite their concern. Some Democrats are saying Trump’s actions are grounds for impeachment. Others on both sides of the aisle are calling for an independent investigation into Russian meddling in the election. Some Republicans are defending the president; others say they are waiting for more details.

Statements from Michigan’s 16-member congressional delegation

Rep. Justin Amash (R - Cascade Twp.)

Amash also told reporters that if the Comey memo is true, there are grounds for impeachment.

Rep. Jack Bergman (R - Watersmeet)

No comment shared yet.

Rep. Mike Bishop (R - Rochester)

“I have a lot of questions. If these interactions really happened the way they are detailed in the former FBI Director’s notes, then why didn’t Congress and the American people know about this sooner? We need answers, and fast. Congress needs all relevant documents and information to thoroughly investigate this matter.”

Rep. John Conyers (D - Detroit)

A spokesman for Rep. Conyers referred to a letter from Democrats on the House Oversight and Judiciary Committees cosigned by the congressman demanding "an immediate investigation into the actions of President Donald Trump, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and top White House aides." 

Rep. Debbie Dingell (D - Dearborn)

“Yesterday’s report that President Trump interfered in an FBI investigation is deeply concerning and only the latest in a series of disturbing actions that could have grave consequences for the American people. The discovery Monday that President Trump shared highly classified intelligence with Russian officials damages our relationship with our allies, jeopardizes U.S. intelligence collection and capabilities, and undermines our safety and security. National security should never be partisan, and it is critical that we work together to get the truth for the American people. The need for an independent bipartisan investigation into Russia’s influence on the Trump administration and our democracy has never been more urgent.”

Rep. Bill Huizenga (R - Zeeland)

“In order to fulfill our constitutional duty, Congress must focus on finding the facts. If a Comey memo does indeed exist, the FBI & Justice Department need to turn the document over to Congress. Should that not happen, I support issuing a Congressional Subpoena to obtain the memo. I hope Mr. Comey will accept the invitation to testify on Capitol Hill next week.”

Rep. Dan Kildee (D - Flint Twp.)

“President Trump interfering with an ongoing FBI investigation is an abuse of power. Republicans can no longer stay silent. It is time to put country before party. This is about protecting our democracy. We need an independent commission now to investigate the troubling Trump administration ties to Russia. I hope all of my colleagues will sign this discharge petition and force a vote on this legislation to establish an outside and independent commission.”

Rep. Brenda Lawrence (D - Southfield)

Rep. Sander Levin (D - Royal Oak)

“I’m deeply troubled by recent media reports on President Trump’s interactions with former FBI Director Comey. Congress needs to immediately exercise its oversight to determine the nature of conversations between President Trump and Mr. Comey regarding General Flynn, the investigation into Russia’s influence in the 2016 election, and more.”

Rep. Paul Mitchell (R - Thomas Twp.)

“Last night, Chairman Chaffetz sent a letter to the FBI requesting documents pertaining to conversations between President Trump and former FBI Director Comey. This inquiry by the Oversight and Government Reform Committee, and the ongoing investigations by other bipartisan committees in Congress, must and will continue.”

Rep. John Moolenaar (R - Midland)

“I think Director Comey should publicly testify before Congress and I support the House effort to obtain his memos so we can find out all the facts. I think the American people would like to see the FBI, and the House and Senate intelligence committees complete their investigations in a timely manner so we can get answers to all the questions the American people have.”

Sen. Gary Peters (D)

Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D)

Rep. Dave Trott (R - Birmingham)

“I believe the American people deserve the opportunity to review any relevant memos regarding communications between Former Director Comey and President Trump, in an effort to provide a full, clear, and factual picture of all the information at hand and where it may lead.”

Rep. Fred Upton (R - St. Joseph)

“Public trust is on the line and the country deserves answers sooner rather than later. I fully support the ongoing efforts to get all of the facts surrounding the firing of FBI Director Comey. I would urge Comey to publicly testify before Congress on what exactly happened. I also remain open to appointing a special prosecutor or setting up an independent investigation as it relates to Russian interference in the 2016 election. We must continue to follow the facts wherever they lead so that we can get to the bottom of this.”

Rep. Tim Walberg (R - Tipton)

“There are three separate bipartisan investigations already underway, and that process must continue to move forward and follow the facts where they lead. As part of this ongoing process, the House Oversight Committee has appropriately requested the full memo, and it is important to gather all the relevant facts before rushing to judgement.”

This post has been updated to include new statements as they come in.

Emma is a communications specialist with the digital team at Michigan Radio. She works across all departments at Michigan Radio, with a hand in everything from digital marketing and fundraising to graphic design and website maintenance. She also produces the station's daily newsletter, The Michigan Radio Beat.
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