Politics ESSENTIAL WASHINGTON

Here's our look at the Trump administration and the rest of Washington

CongressRussiaWhite House

House Republicans rally around Trump while Democrats warn of potential obstruction of justice

House Republicans quickly brushed off the latest allegations over President Trump's conversations with then-FBI Director James B. Comey, but Democrats pushed for fuller airing in what they warned could be obstruction of justice by the White House.

Republicans were returning to the House for the first votes of the week late Tuesday when it was reported, initially by the New York Times, that Comey wrote in a memo that Trump had asked him to halt the investigation of Michael Flynn, the former national security advisor.

"He's under total assault," said Rep. Steve Pearce (R-N.M.).

The White House said the president has never asked Comey or anyone else to end any investigation.

Trump fired Comey last week, and said later he was unhappy with the FBI investigation, which is looking into possible links between Trump's campaign and the Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Flynn resigned earlier this year after the administration said he lied about the nature of his past conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. 

Democrats, meanwhile, said the Comey memo could amount to obstruction of justice by the White House, an impeachable offense by a president. 

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) said: “If these reports are true, the president’s brazen attempt to shut down the FBI’s investigation of Michael Flynn is an assault on the rule of law that is fundamental to our democracy.  At best, President Trump has committed a grave abuse of executive power.  At worst, he has obstructed justice."

Latest updates

Copyright © 2017, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World