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Comey sought more resources for Russia investigation before he was fired, officials say

Then-FBI Director James Comey pauses as he testifies at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on May 3. (Carolyn Kaster / Associated Press)
Then-FBI Director James Comey pauses as he testifies at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on May 3. (Carolyn Kaster / Associated Press)

FBI Director James B. Comey met last week with Rod Rosenstein, the new deputy attorney general, and asked for both money and personnel to step up the investigation into possible coordination between Russian intelligence and members of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, according to two officials who spoke on condition of anonymity.

One Democratic congressional aide said the request was for a “significant increase in resources.”

But a Justice Department spokesman denied that Comey had made the request.

“Totally false,” said Ian Prior. Comey “never made the request for more resources and money for the Russia investigations.”

Prior declined to comment on whether Rosenstein and Comey met last week, and what was discussed. The FBI declined to comment.

Trump abruptly fired Comey on Tuesday, saying he based his decision on a recommendation from Rosenstein and Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions.

In a letter dated Tuesday, Rosenstein said Comey should be replaced because he had breached department protocol by repeatedly making statements about the FBI investigation into Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s emails.

But the future of the Russia investigations looms over Trump’s decision to fire Comey.

Rosenstein, who was confirmed as deputy attorney general on April 25, is heading the Justice Department’s investigation into the Russia dealings.

Sessions recused himself after news reports revealed he had met with the Russian ambassador twice during the campaign and failed to disclose the meetings in his Senate confirmation hearing.

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