President Donald Trump told Russian officials in a White House meeting that firing Federal Bureau of Investigation Director James Comey relieved "great pressure," the New York Times reports.
"I just fired the head of the F.B.I. He was crazy, a real nut job," Trump said, according to a document from the May 10th meeting read out to Times reporters. He referenced the "great pressure because of Russia" he faced that had now been alleviated. Trump also said he was not under investigation.
The White House has not denied this report, according to the Times:
Sean Spicer, the White House press secretary, did not dispute the account.
In a statement, he said that Mr. Comey had put unnecessary pressure on the president’s ability to conduct diplomacy with Russia on matters such as Syria, Ukraine and the Islamic State.
The meeting with Russia's foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov, and the Russian ambassador to the United States, Sergey Kislyak, took place the day after the White House fired Comey, citing recommendations from Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.