Attorney General Jeff Sessions has said there are several dozen leak investigations open, though that aggressiveness is similar to that of the Obama Justice Department, which was frequently criticized by media organizations and free press advocates.
At the time, officials at the FBI knew Comey had memorialized his interactions with the President, but were not aware he shared the contents outside of the bureau until Comey divulged it during his testimony last June, one source explained.
ABC News obtained copies of the memos, which are partially redacted, on Thursday after the Justice Department turned over 15 pages of declassified material to Congress. Mueller is examining Russia's interference in the 2016 United States election, whether the Trump campaign colluded with Moscow to tilt the race in his favor, and whether Trump sought to obstruct justice when he fired Comey last May. According to the memos, Comey told Trump it would be tricky legally to jail reporters but said he saw value in going after leakers and "putting a head on a pike as a message" by bringing such a case.
While trying hard to be aware of the dangers facing us in "the swamp" here in our nation's capital, I have been busily perusing the literary reviews of former FBI Director James Comey's already famous book, the better to be prepared against the night crawlers and itinerant crocodiles our leader has warned us against.
Boyd wrote in the letter that the department "consulted the relevant parties" and concluded that releasing the memos would not adversely affect any ongoing investigations. The Comey memos show Trump was on McCabe's case early in his presidency.
So General Michael Flynn's life can be totally destroyed while Shadey James Comey can Leak and Lie and make lots of money from a third rate book (that should never have been written). "I do think [Comey's] facing exposure because some of that stuff very well may have been classified".
The memos offer some additional details of the then-FBI director's interactions with the president, but they largely corroborate Mr Comey's account of the key events that have been public for nearly a year. Details from Comey's memos reported in news stories past year appear to come from the unclassified portions.
Trump, according to the memos, repeatedly denied the allegations and prodded Comey to help disprove them, while also recalling being told by Russian President Vladimir Putin that Russia has the most lovely prostitutes, it said. But Comey is quoted in the report as saying McCabe never told him he had approved sharing details of the call and, in fact, had left him with the opposite impression.
The question from Priebus came after former acting Attorney General Sally Yates had warned the White House that Flynn was susceptible to blackmail regarding his contacts with the Russian ambassador. Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI and is now cooperating with Mueller's investigation.
In a letter dated May 17 Erica S. Hamrick, deputy chief of OSC's Hatch Act Unit, told Mr. Comey they were shutting things down.
"His attempts to intimidate, circumvent the law & undermine integrity of law enforcement investigations demand immediate action to protect the Mueller investigation", she said.
Comey is on a publicity tour to promote his new book, "A Higher Loyalty".