It's obvious that some want to harm Trump: Ryan

Even without an immediate subpoena, Cummings said he was "encouraged that the chairman sent a letter last night asking for the Comey memos".

But Ryan said the investigations into the White House do not make it easier for congressional Republicans. "Our job is to be responsible, sober and focus only on gathering the facts".

The Utah Republican, who had just started his fifth term in Congress, used his post as chair of the oversight committee to doggedly investigate Hillary Clinton before the 2016 presidential election and raise his political profile. Those revelations have moved some GOP legislators to abandon Trump, with at least three Republican lawmakers openly mulling the prospects for impeachment on Wednesday.

The reason, the President implied, was that Comey wouldn't end his investigation into allegations of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation - allegations the President insists were untrue.

At a press conference Thursday, House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wi., said Republican lawmakers were working on passing their agenda, including repealing President Obama's health care law and passing a tax overhaul. Yet U.S. allies and some members of Congress expressed concern bordering on alarm.

While the media is the easy target, the bigger question is who is leaking such sensitive information from inside the White House to undermine the President.

"We no longer live in a world where the USA can set a corporate tax rate without considering what our global competition looks like", John Stephen, AT&T's chief financial officer, told the House Ways and Means Committee.

Goodwin said on "America's Newsroom" today that Hoover created the Federal Bureau of Investigation, but no one "could get rid of him", explaining that six presidents wanted to fire him but Hoover died in office.

"The memo is powerful evidence of obstruction of justice and certainly merits immediate and prompt investigation by an independent special prosecutor", said Democratic US Senator Richard Blumenthal.

"Drama is not helpful in getting things done", he added. "The White House hopefully will see this as a jolt to support them in driving this forward".

The letter from the senators to White House Counsel Donald McGahn, seeks "all White House records memorializing interactions with Mr. Comey relating to the FBI's investigation of alleged ties between President Trump's associates and Russian Federation, or the Clinton email investigation, including all audio recordings, transcripts, notes, summaries, or memoranda".

Flynn left his post in February after media reports that he misled the vice president about his contacts with Russian Federation.

Although Mr Trump did not break any laws, it could be argued that he violated his oath of office if he shared information through carelessness or neglect.

"He was using his power to do that, and when James Comey didn't go along with him, when he wasn't his boy, he fired him, which I think is also relevant to the question of what he was trying to do", Gergen said.

If Republicans pull off victories in upcoming special House elections in Georgia, Montana and SC, they'll likely be even more encouraged to stay the course with Trump.

The Senate Intelligence and Judiciary Committees have requested copies of Comey's memos detailing conversations with Trump, and the intelligence panel on Wednesday invited Comey to testify both behind closed doors and in a public session.

"No politician in history, and I say this with great surety, has been treated worse or more unfairly". Comey said he replied that "I agree he is a good guy" but said nothing to Trump about limiting the investigation.

But even with months of planning and trips by teams from the National Security Council and the White House to all the countries on the itinerary, there remains room for error, according to more than half a dozen foreign policy experts who have planned official foreign trips. The American Civil Liberties Union announced Wednesday it would also ask for documentation of the conversation between Comey and Trump.

Overlooked in The Times report: Trump also reportedly told Comey that he "should consider putting reporters in prison for publishing classified information".

Henrietta Treyz, an analyst with Veda Partners, said in an email to MarketWatch that impeachment seems "highly unlikely". He used that phrase nine times in his briefing to reporters.

"There are stories every day in the press now about the atmosphere inside the White House, the screaming and yelling that is happening, the pointing of fingers, the fighting".

A US official who confirmed the disclosure to The Associated Press said the revelation potentially put the source at risk.

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