Poll: Americans believe Comey more than Trump over firing

Twice as many Americans say they are more likely to believe former FBI Director James Comey than President Trump on their accounts of events leading up to Comey's firing last month, according to a new poll.

Forty-five percent of respondents in an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released Friday said they are more likely to believe Comey’s testimony before senators on June 8, while 22 percent said they would believe Trump’s side of the story.

Another 21 percent said they don't believe either Trump or Comey's account of the events, while 8 percent said they believe both.

Three in four Democrats, 76 percent, said they believe Comey, while half of Republicans, 50 percent, side with the president. Independents favor Comey's testimony over Trump's account, 47 percent to 17 percent.

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Comey testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee that Trump asked him to drop an investigation into his former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, which Trump has denied.

Comey also testified that the president asked for him to pledge his loyalty, which he told lawmakers he declined to do.

Forty-six percent of Americans disapprove of Trump's decision to fire Comey, up from 38 percent in May, according to the NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll. Just 27 percent of Americans said they approved of the president’s decision.

The administration originally cited Comey's mishandling of the investigation into Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonRepublican Ohio Senate candidate slams JD Vance over previous Trump comments Budowsky: Why GOP donors flock to Manchin and Sinema Countering the ongoing Republican delusion MORE’s use of a private email server while secretary of State in the 2016 presidential campaign for his firing, though Trump later told NBC News that "this Russia thing with Trump" was on his mind when he decided to fire the FBI chief.

The poll found that a majority of Americans, 53 percent, believe that the Russian government interfered in the 2016 election, as opposed to only 36 percent who disagree.

The survey of 900 adults was conducted June 17–20 and has an overall margin of error of 3.3 percentage points.