US House Committees release transcripts of ex-FBI Director Comey's testimony

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Fittingly, a GOP member of the committee spoke to the media afterwards about how Comey wouldn't answer questions, at the direction of legal counsel.

Nadler and the top Democrat on the oversight panel, Maryland Rep. Elijah Cummings, said in a statement after the meeting that Comey's testimony yielded few new details.

"That's a very teeny part of what we talked about - a whole lot of Hillary Clinton emails, which will bore you", he said.

Comey testified the same day before two House committees.

The transcipt from former FBI Director James Comey's closed-door testimony is released by House Republicans.

Comey told lawmakers that the FBI launched its Russian Federation counterintelligence investigation into four individuals, and not the Trump campaign itself. Mueller took over the department's investigation when he was appointed in May 2017.

The questioning largely centred on well-covered territory from a Justice Department inspector general report, Comey's own book and interviews and hours of public testimony on Capitol Hill.

Multiple Trump associates, including his former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and Trump's former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, have pleaded guilty to lying about their interactions with Russians during the campaign and presidential transition period. "I am not", Comey said, telling lawmakers he doesn't know Mueller's phone number, and has no relation with him "in any social sense.' But Comey made clear he is a believer in Mueller". Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort's foreign dealings, including to an associate the USA says has ties to Russian intelligence, has also attracted law enforcement scrutiny. Comey and House Democrats said the interview was a waste of time, consumed with questions about Hillary Clinton's emails.

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"One of the disappointments of this deposition so far has been the amount of times in which the Federal Bureau of Investigation believes that Congress doesn't have a right to know", Issa said, according to Fox News.

"Don't do it in a dark corner and don't do it in a way where all you do is leak information", said Comey's attorney, David Kelley.

Comey said Strzok edited a letter sent to Congress days before the election disclosing the reopening of the Clinton probe, "So it's hard for me to see how he was on Team Clinton secretly at that point in time".

CNN reported this week on the circumstances that prompted McCabe to open an obstruction investigation in the wake of Comey's firing even before Mueller was appointed less than two weeks later.

He also responded "I don't know" or "I don't remember" in response to dozens of questions about details of the Russian Federation investigation, Fox News reported. "All lies!" Trump tweeted.

The Republican-led inquiry has been lambasted by Democrats as a partisan effort to undermine Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the election. He chose to comply after the committee agreed to give him a full transcript of that testimony within 24 hours, which he is free to make public.

Goodlatte said the transcript will be released to the public as soon as possible after the interview December 2. But it also found there was no evidence that Comey's or the department's final conclusions were motivated by political bias toward either candidate.

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