James Comey Russia investigation
Ex-FBI Director James Comey will testify on Thursday. Photo: Reuters

Former FBI Director James Comey testifies before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday in a hearing that will be aired live on national television beginning at 10 a.m.

 

Transcripts of Comey’s much-anticipated prepared testimony, which he will read before the 15-member panel, were released Wednesday. In it, Comey claims Trump asked him to let the investigation into ex-national security adviser Michael Flynn go.

 

“I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go,” Trump allegedly said to Comey on March 30, according to written memos he made of nine conversations he had with the president.

 

Comey noted he did not tell the president he would “let this go."

 

A little more than a month later, Trump fired Comey. Controversy into Comey’s May 9 firing has swirled over the last month as the Trump administration has offered conflicting reasons for the decision, and the media has speculated the timing of the firing coincided with the intensifying of the FBI’s investigation into Flynn’s connections with Russia.

The FBI began investigating Flynn after he failed to disclose ties and communications with Russian officials. The FBI is looking into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russian hackers to tamper with the 2016 presidential election.

The Senate Intelligence Committee is also investigating potential ties between the Trump campaign and Russian election hackers and is interested in whether the president committed obstruction of justice in firing Comey with the intent of ending the Russia investigation. 

Live airings of congressional hearings are exceedingly rare and put Comey’s testimony in the company of events like the Watergate hearings in 1973, the Army-McCarthy hearings in 1954 and the President Bill Clinton impeachment hearings in 1998.

CBS, ABC, NBC, PBS and of course C-SPAN will all broadcast Comey’s testimony live, or you can just watch it here: