- REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
FBI Director James Comey told the US Justice Department on Saturday to reject President Donald Trump’s baseless claim that President Barack Obama ordered the wiretapping of Trump’s phones, according to The New York Times.
Comey argued that Trump’s claim is false and has no supporting evidence, The Times reported, citing senior US officials. The Justice Department has yet to release a statement, however.
Trump made his stunning allegation Saturday morning, apparently referencing an article from the conservative news site Breitbart. The president raised the stakes on Sunday by calling for Congress to investigate his claim as part of its probe into Russian interference during the 2016 election.
Press Secretary Sean Spicer said the White House will not comment on the allegations “until such oversight is conducted.”
Meanwhile, Trump’s request could put Republican lawmakers in an uncomfortable position.
“I’ve never heard that allegation made before by anybody. I’ve never seen anything about that anywhere before,” Sen. Marco Rubio said on “Meet The Press” on Sunday. “The president put that out there, and now the White House will have to answer as to exactly what he was referring to.”
Earlier this week, Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from investigations involving connections between Trump’s team and Russia. His recusal leaves few people in the Justice Department with the power to release a statement on Trump’s wiretapping claim, according to The Times.