Trump responds to report that FBI investigated if he worked on behalf of Russia

The New York Times reported that the FBI decided to open an investigation into President Trump after he fired James Comey from his position as FBI director in 2017.

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By Phil McCausland and Kristen Welker

President Donald Trump spent Saturday morning on Twitter responding to a New York Times report that the FBI investigated whether he worked on behalf of Russia against U.S. interests and if the president could be a national security threat.

Over a series of five tweets — beginning at 6:05 a.m. and wrapping up at 8:20 a.m. — Trump attacked the New York Times, the FBI, former FBI Director James Comey, Hillary Clinton, Robert Mueller and a handful of others in response to a story that looked into a counterintelligence investigation of the president and his decision making surrounding Russia.

"Wow, just learned in the Failing New York Times that the corrupt former leaders of the FBI, almost all fired or forced to leave the agency for some very bad reasons, opened up an investigation on me, for no reason & with no proof, after I fired Lyin’ James Comey, a total sleaze!" the president wrote on Twitter.

The New York Times reported Friday that the FBI decided to open an investigation into Trump after he fired Comey from his position as FBI director in 2017 and the president twice tied the dismissal to the Russia investigation. The investigation had two fronts: probing whether Comey's firing fell into the category of obstruction of justice and whether the president was knowingly or unwittingly working on behalf of the Russian government.

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Mueller, who now leads the special counsel investigation into Russia's meddling in the 2016 investigation, took over the FBI's probe soon after its creation, the New York Times reported.

One of the events that investigators considered is an NBC News interview with Trump that occurred two days after he fired Comey. During that interview, Trump himself connected the dismissal to the Russia investigation.

The White House quickly dismissed the New York Times' story shortly after it was published Friday night.

“This is absurd. James Comey was fired because he’s a disgraced partisan hack, and his Deputy Andrew McCabe, who was in charge at the time, is a known liar fired by the FBI. Unlike President Obama, who let Russia and other foreign adversaries push America around, President Trump has actually been tough on Russia,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said.

The President's lawyer Rudy Giuliani also pushed back against the report in a phone call with NBC News on Friday night.

"I think it's of no concern at all," Giuliani said of the investigation. "It goes back a year and a half ago. If they found something that imperiled national security, they would have had to report it. If it's true, it indicates how out of control they are."

"The Justice Department should give the president the report of any counterintelligence investigation they found," the former New York City mayor added. "They obviously found nothing or else they would have reported it."

Giuliani also confirmed that the president's team would no longer take any questions from the Mueller probe and added that his team was prepared to respond to any forthcoming report from the special counsel.