Trump asked intel chiefs to speak out against FBI's Russia probe: report

Trump asked intel chiefs to speak out against FBI's Russia probe: report

President Trump reportedly asked two top intelligence officials in March to publicly deny the existence of any evidence of collusion between his campaign and Russia, The Washington Post reported Monday.

Trump reportedly asked Dan CoatsDaniel (Dan) Ray CoatsDNC unveils new security checklist to protect campaigns from cyberattacks Overnight Defense: Trump to leave 200 troops in Syria | Trump, Kim plan one-on-one meeting | Pentagon asks DHS to justify moving funds for border wall Is Putin attacking Sanders, Harris and Warren to help Trump? MORE, the director of national intelligence, and Adm. Michael Rogers, director of the National Security Agency, to make public statements that there were no ties between Russian officials and members of Trump's campaign. Both officials refused to do so because they thought the requests were inappropriate, according to the report.
 
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Senior White House officials also reportedly asked how they could directly intervene with former FBI Director James Comey's investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn.
 
“Can we ask him to shut down the investigation? Are you able to assist in this matter?” one official reportedly asked.
 
The NSA and a spokesman for Coats declined to comment to the Post, citing the current investigation.
 
“The White House does not confirm or deny unsubstantiated claims based on illegal leaks from anonymous individuals,” a White House spokesperson told the Post. “The president will continue to focus on his agenda that he was elected to pursue by the American people.”
 
Trump fired Comey earlier this month, later saying he did so because of the agency's investigation into his campaign's potential connections to Russia. Trump reportedly told Russian officials during a recent meeting that firing Comey eased pressure on him.
 
Trump reportedly made the appeals to the intelligence chiefs after Comey testified to the House Intelligence Committee in March about the FBI's investigation. 
 
The president first called Coats and then contacted Rogers later the same week.