Former FBI Director James Comey has reportedly told close advisers that he hopes President Trump recorded him during their White House dinner in late January.
According to CNN, Comey has told associates that he is “not worried about any tapes” that Trump may have of their Jan. 27 dinner.
“If there is a tape, there’s nothing he is worried about,” a source told CNN.
“He hopes there are tapes. That would be perfect,” a Comey associate told NBC News reporter Ken Dilanian.
A longtime Comey associate tells The Daily Caller that the former FBI chief would welcome the release of a tape, if Trump actually has one.
The associate said a tape release “would be great for Jim.”
Comey’s interest in taped recordings is a response to Trump’s thinly veiled threat warning the former FBI chief not to leak details of their conversations. (RELATED: Trump Implied There Are Recordings Of His Conversations With Comey)
“James Comey better hope that there are no ‘tapes’ of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press,” Trump said on Twitter.
It is not entirely clear if recordings actually exist.
White House press secretary Sean Spicer said at Friday’s daily press briefing that he was “not aware” of any recordings. When pressed, Spicer dodged the question, saying that “the president has no further comment on this.”
The Jan. 27 dinner has become a focal point of the ongoing debate over Trump’s decision to fire Comey earlier this week. In a letter to Comey, Trump stated that the former FBI chief assured him on three separate occasions that he was not under investigation in the Russia probe.
Asked about those three assurances, Trump said one came during a White House dinner; the other two during phone calls.
Trump said that Comey requested the dinner in order to discuss his job status. Comey wanted to stay on at the bureau, Trump said.
But unnamed sources close to Comey cast a different picture of the dinner meeting. They said that Trump requested the meeting, not Comey. And during the dinner, Trump asked Comey to pledge his loyalty. Comey was “taken aback” by the request, CNN’s Jake Tapper reported.