The Comey affair

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Donald Trump and FBI director James Comey have been on a collision course since last year when U.S. intelligence concluded that Russia tried to interfere in the November presidential election.

July 2016: The FBI quietly opens an investigation into Russian interference in the U.S. election, which would only be officially revealed eight months later.

October 7: U.S. intelligence officials announce that top Russian officials are behind hacking and disinformation operations designed to disrupt the election.

November 8: Trump defeats Democrat Hillary Clinton, under the shadow of Russian interference and Comedy’s controversial handling of an investigation into Clinton’s private email server.

December 10: Democrats accuse Comey of withholding information about Russian election interference during the campaign to boost Trump.

January 6, 2017: Comey briefs Trump on their conclusion that Russian President Vladimir Putin was behind the bid to interfere with the election.

Mid-January: Trump asks Comey to stay in his post in his new administration.

February 14: The FBI rejects a White House request to refute a New York Times story alleging numerous contacts between Trump campaign officials and Russian intelligence.

February 24: Trump blasts the FBI over news reports on the Russia case, tweeting: “The FBI is totally unable to stop the national security ‘leakers’…”

March 8: Comey says he plans to stay in his job for a full 10-year-term, until 2023, quipping: “You are stuck with me for another six-and-a-half years.”

March 20: Comey confirms that the FBI is investigating Russian interference in the election.

He also denies Trump’s claim that Barack Obama ordered to tap the phones at Trump’s home.

May 9: Trump fires Comey.

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