"Thursday will be one of the most consequential days of President Trump's administration so far and that's because we're going to hear for the first time since he was fired from former FBI director James Comey. He'll be testifying before a Senate Committee and he's expected to be asked not only about the Russian campaign to interfere with the US election and how if at all the Trump campaign was related to that but also the circumstances behind his firing. There's a lot of questions lawmakers have about whether President Trump was pressuring him or interfering with that underlying investigation in some way."
Washington, DC - 3 May 2017
3. Various, James Comey greeting lawmakers as he arrives to testify
"We've actually heard from Comey a few times through congressional testimony because he was such a main player in the elections. You might remember that he testified about his investigation, the FBI's investigation into Hillary Clinton and her handling of emails and now he is looking, or he was until he was fired, was looking at any connections betweens Russians and the Trump campaigns. So he's been front and center quite a bit and lawmakers from both parties have been very interested in hearing from him about the Russia side of the investigation as well ."
Washington, DC - 3 May 2017
5. Various, Comey being sworn in before giving testimony
"since it's such an important day and his testimony will be carried live on many different tv stations, it's important for the White House to have the strategy for how it handles it. President Trump is a prolific tweeter so there's been some question about whether Trump would be watching the hearings live and maybe even weighing in on Twitter. We of course don't have a definitive answer on that. We'll have to watch twitter to see if that happens but it's clear that the White House wants to keep the president busy that day. Sean Spicer the press secretary said in a briefing that the president has a full day, he'll actually be giving a speech here in Washington, during part of the hearing, ensuring that he won't be on twitter and there are lots of other White House events planned for the day. At the same time, aids of the president and outside groups who are supportive of the president are already starting to plan their pushback on Comey depending of course on what he says. There's an outside group called the Great America alliance. That's a politically active nonprofit that doesn't' have to disclose its donors that has cut the new ad that disparages Comey really. Questions his credibility based on statements he made at previous congressional hearings and also questions whether he is too much of a political actor and not dedicated enough to the overall mission of the FBI so that's one way that groups are trying to get out ahead of the hearing and raise questions in people's minds as to whether they can really trust anything that Comey says."
The White House and its allies are scrambling for ways to offset potential damage from fired FBI Director James Comey's highly anticipated congressional testimony, an appearance that could expose new details about his discussions with President Donald Trump about the federal investigation into Russia's election meddling.
Asked about the testimony, Trump on Tuesday was tight-lipped: "I wish him luck," he told reporters before a meeting with lawmakers.
Trump's White House and its allies are crafting a strategy aimed at undermining Comey's credibility. Both White House officials and an outside group that backs Trump plan to hammer Comey in the coming days for misstatements he made about Democrat Hillary Clinton's emails during his last appearance on Capitol Hill.
An ad created by the pro-Trump Great America Alliance also casts Comey as a "showboat" who was "consumed with election meddling" instead of focusing on combating terrorism. The 30-second spot is slated to run digitally on Wednesday and appear the next day on CNN and Fox News.
Comey's testimony before the Senate intelligence committee marks his first public comments since he was abruptly ousted by Trump on May 9. Since then, Trump and Comey allies have traded competing narratives about their interactions. The president asserted that Comey told him three times that he was not personally under investigation, while the former director's associates allege Trump asked Comey if he could back off an investigation into Michael Flynn, who was fired as national security adviser because he misled the White House about his ties to Russia.