WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former FBI Director James Comey now believes that President Donald Trump was trying to influence his judgment about the Russia probe, a person familiar with his thinking says, but whether that influence amounts to obstruction of justice remains an open question. "You have to have intent in order to obstruct justice in the criminal sense," the source said, adding that "intent is hard to prove."
At a news conference Thursday, Trump angrily denied that he had asked Comey to end the investigation, which is now in the hands of new special counsel Robert Mueller. The President blasted the probe into Russia's involvement in the 2016 election and possible collusion with his campaign as a "witch hunt." Comey's view of Trump's intent in their conversations is nuanced, sources say.
According to the report, officials at the White House first developed a method of searching the Internet to glean the political leanings of a candidate and introduced it at a White House seminar called The Thorough Process of Investigation.