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The Latest: Trump says FBI was ‘plotting against’ me

The Latest: Trump says FBI was 'plotting against' me
The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the Justice Department’s inspector general report (all times local):

8:45 a.m.

President Donald Trump says the Justice Department watchdog report on the Clinton email probe shows the FBI was biased against him “at the top level” and was “plotting against my election.”

Trump is giving an impromptu interview with Steve Doocy of “Fox & Friends” on the North Lawn of the White House Friday. He says of the report: “That was the most biased set of circumstances I’ve ever seen in my life.”

The inspector general report, while damaging to the FBI and to Comey personally, does not support Trump’s allegation that political preferences influenced the conduct of the email investigation into his Democratic presidential rival.

Trump tells Doocy: “The end result was wrong. There was total bias.”

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7:30 p.m.

President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani is casting doubt that President Donald Trump will ever agree to be interviewed in the Russia probe because of the latest findings by the Justice Department of political bias among some FBI agents.

The Justice Department’s internal watchdog found Comey broke protocol in his handling of the email probe involving Democrat Hillary Clinton. The report included politically charged texts by two FBI employees.

Giuliani tells “Fox & Friends” that political bias has tainted the Russia probe being led by special counsel Robert Mueller.

He said it’s time to “clean up the FBI” and leave Trump alone. He asked: “Why would he get interviewed by a corrupt investigation?”

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7:10 a.m.

President Donald Trump says former FBI Director James Comey will “now officially go down as the worst leader, by far, in the history of the FBI,” and adds he did “a great service to the people in firing him.”

The Justice Department’s internal watchdog branded Comey as insubordinate for repeatedly breaking with Justice Department protocol in his handling of the email probe involving Democrat Hillary Clinton.

Trump has suggested that Comey’s handling of the email investigation is proof that the Russia investigation was tainted. That probe includes a look at whether Trump himself tried to obstruct justice by firing Comey.

Trump tweeted Friday that the new report “is a total disaster for Comey, his minions and sadly, the FBI. Comey will now officially go down as the worst leader, by far, in the history of the FBI. I did a great service to the people in firing him. Good Instincts. Christopher Wray will bring it proudly back!”

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7 a.m.

President Donald Trump is tweeting about the politically charged texts between two FBI employees, declaring that it “doesn’t get any lower than that!”

It’s the president’s first tweet on the report by the Justice Department’s internal watchdog. The IG found the text messages sullied the FBI’s reputation and “cast a cloud” over its investigation into Democrat Hillary Clinton’s email but did not affect the investigation itself.

The running political commentary between the agency employees included one comment expressing a desire to “stop” Trump’s election.

Trump referenced that comment in his tweet Friday and adds: “Doesn’t get any lower than that!”

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12:35 a.m.

An inspector general report condemning the FBI’s actions in the Hillary Clinton email investigation blasts former FBI Director James Comey but also denies total vindication to the president who fired him.

The 500-page document stops far short of endorsing the attacks levied at Comey for the last year by President Donald Trump.

Though Trump has alleged that a politically tainted FBI tried to undermine his campaign, the report found nothing to suggest that political preferences influenced how the investigation was conducted.

Trump has suggested anyone less politically connected than Clinton would have been charged for the same behavior, yet the report does not second-guess the FBI’s decision to spare her from prosecution.

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