Trump calls report on FBI probe of him 'most insulting'

Donald Trump meets Vladimir Putin at the G-20 Summit in Hamburg

Donald Trump meets Vladimir Putin at the G-20 Summit in Hamburg

Trump responded to the report Saturday during a telephone interview broadcast on Fox News Channel after host Jeanine Pirro asked whether he is now or has ever worked for Russian Federation.

The bombshell story comes just one day after the New York Times revealed that the FBI opened a joint counterintelligence and criminal investigation into whether the president was working for Russian Federation against American interests when he fired FBI Director James Comey in 2017. Agents also sought to determine whether Mr. Trump was knowingly working for Russian Federation or had unwittingly fallen under Moscow's influence. "I find it astonishing", Senator Lindsey Graham said on the "Fox News Sunday" program.

"If you compare objectively, President Trump's policies to Russia compared to President Obama's policies to Russia - by any measure, President Obama was much easier, was much more gentler on Russia". "I think it's the most insulting article I've ever had written and if you read the [New York Times] article you see that they found absolutely nothing".

A published report shows federal law enforcement officials were so concerned about Mr Trump's behaviour after he fired James Comey from the FBI that they began investigating whether he had been working for the United States adversary against American interests.

On Friday, the New York Times published a story about an FBI probe into Trump's behavior following his firing of former FBI Director James Comey. Yet White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders responded to the story by The New York Times by saying "This is absurd".

There have already been concerns by special counsel Robert Mueller that Trump's firing of Comey constituted an act of obstruction of justice. The Times says it's unclear whether Mueller is still pursuing the counterintelligence angle.

A new report in The Washington Post said Trump went to extraordinary lengths to hide details of his conversations with Russian President Vladimir Putin even from high-ranking officials in his own administration.

Ratcliffe called the Baker transcript leak "selective", adding that the full transcript of the October 18 interview, which is undergoing a classification review by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Justice Department, reveals "that in May 2017, political bias infected senior Federal Bureau of Investigation leadership, and emotion - not evidence - drove their decision making".

As a result, USA officials told the Post, there exists "no detailed record, even in classified files", of Trump's meetings with the Russian leader at five locations over the past two years.

In Helsinki, the two presidents spoke behind closed doors for two hours with only their interpreters present.

Mr Trump's relations with Russian Federation before his election in 2016 are the subject of an ongoing federal investigation.

And there is reportedly no record of his one-on-one, two-hour discussion with Mr Putin in Helsinki previous year.

Trump described the news report as "ridiculous". Pirro asked on Saturday. "I couldn't care less". "I do it with all countries".

Trump said it was the "most insulting" question he'd ever been asked.

"Anybody could have listened to that meeting, that meeting is up for grabs".

"This is just at odds with how presidents have conducted diplomacy for decades and decades In the United States", said Washington Post reporter Greg Miller in a Sunday interview with NPR's Lulu Garcia-Navarro.

The Post reported that Trump has gone to "extraordinary lengths" to hide details of his conversations with Putin. There has been a confusing and sometimes even alarming tendency on the part of President Trump to complement President Putin and to do things like his abrupt announcement of a withdrawal from Syria that led his own secretary of defense to resign, that has led many of us to question his closeness to and his affinity for President Putin. The justification went beyond Trump's firing of Comey, according to the sources, and included the President's conversation with Comey in the Oval Office asking him to drop the investigation into his former national security adviser Michael Flynn. "I do think what we can all agree on is that the Mueller investigation should reach its conclusion".

"In fact, when I was sacked as director, I still didn't know whether there was anything to it", Comey said in testimony, according to the transcript.