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The Latest: Senator foresees obstruction of justice case

The FBI has drawn a sharp rebuke from President Donald Trump in the wake of news that an agent was taken off the special counsel's team investigating Russian election meddling because of anti-Trump text messages. In tweets Trump questioned the FBI's direction and charged that its reputation is "in Tatters _ worst in History!" after James Comey, the director whom he fired. Trump also retweeted a post saying new FBI Director Chris Wray "needs to clean house."

President Donald Trump gestures as he walks towards Air Force One at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York, Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017. Trump spent the day in New York attending a trio of fundraisers. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh), President Donald Trump gestures as he walks towards Air Force One at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York, Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017. Trump spent the day in New York attending a trio of fundraisers. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
1 week ago

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the removal of a veteran FBI agent from the special counsel’s investigative team (all times local):

1:20 p.m.

The top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee says the panel is starting to see “the putting together of a case of obstruction of justice” against President Donald Trump.

Speaking on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” California Democrat Dianne Feinstein said the evidence is coming partly from “the continual tweets” from the White House. Trump is focusing renewed attacks on the FBI, and on the investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller, two days after ousted national security adviser Michael Flynn agreed to cooperate with the probe as part of a plea agreement.

Feinstein said she believes Trump’s firing of FBI Director James Comey came “directly because he did not agree to lift the cloud of the Russia investigation.” She added, “That’s obstruction of justice.”

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham is warning Trump to tread cautiously, telling CBS’ “Face the Nation” that Trump’s comments about ongoing criminal investigations come at his “own peril.”

___

8:30 a.m.

President Donald Trump is attacking his own FBI in a series of tweets and says the law enforcement agency’s reputation is “in Tatters – worst in History!” The president says in a tweet that “we will bring it back to greatness.”

The president was responding to reports that a veteran FBI counterintelligence agent was removed from special counsel Robert Mueller’s team investigating Russian election meddling because of anti-Trump text messages.

He writes after years under fired FBI director James Comey, “with the phony and dishonest Clinton investigation (and more),” the agency’s reputation “is in Tatters – worst in History!'” The president also retweeted a tweet suggesting FBI Director Chris Wray “needs to clean house.”

The president said earlier Sunday he never asked Comey to stop investigating ex-national security adviser Michael Flynn.

__

8:15 a.m.

President Donald Trump says a veteran FBI counterintelligence agent who was removed from special counsel Robert Mueller’s team investigating Russian election meddling was a “Tainted (no, very dishonest?)” agent.

The president is suggesting the agency needs a dramatic overhaul under new FBI director Christopher Wray.

Trump tweeted Sunday: “Tainted (no, very dishonest?) FBI ‘agent’s role in Clinton probe under review.’ Led Clinton Email probe.”

The agent was removed during the summer after the discovery of an exchange of text messages viewed as potentially anti-Trump, a person familiar with the matter said Saturday. The agent had also worked on the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server.

The person was not authorized to speak about it by name and spoke on condition of anonymity.

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