Meanwhile, deputy U.S. Attorney General Rod Rosenstein threatened to resign from his position only two weeks after entering office, as a result of the White House's handling of the Comey's dismissal, according to a report published on Thursday morning in The Washington Post. Aides scrambled to rush out a statement on Comey's firing.
Comey, who testified for four hours before the Senate Judiciary Committee, said it made him feel "mildly nauseous" that his decision to make public his reopening of a probe into Clinton's handling of classified information might have affected the outcome of the November 8 presidential election. Next Tuesday, the Senate intelligence committee investigating Russian meddling in the USA election wants to hear from James Comey the private citizen during a closed-door hearing. "I'm not talking about campaigns, I'm not talking about anything else".
Trump's advisers have repeatedly tried to downplay the Russia-election matter, with Sanders saying Wednesday the FBI was "doing a whole lot more than the Russian Federation investigation". The IG is already doing an investigation into how Comey handled the Clinton email matter, but has not finalized that report.
Until then, possible candidates being floated by USA media include New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, former NY mayor Rudy Giuliani, former NY police commissioner Ray Kelly, and John Pistole, a former deputy director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation under president George W Bush.
Lawmakers have voiced concern over the timing of Comey's firing, which comes amid the FBI's probe of Russia's meddling in the 2016 presidential election. "It is done, and I will be fine, although I will miss you and the mission deeply", Comey said in a letter to agents and colleagues.
"[Now] we find, just days after Comey asked for more resources for the Russian Federation investigation, that Trump suddenly decides, "Hey, I don't like this guy, he is not doing a good job".
Comey's firing was announced in a news release on Tuesday.
Several FBI employees told CBS News that they were touched by Comey's message, but they didn't appear to be heeding his advice.
Grassley specifically rejected those calls, however, saying that a special prosecutor would mean the public doesn't get any information on the investigation unless that person brings a case. Trump, however, did not respond to a question about whether the new FBI Director would be in charge of the investigation into Russia's contacts with his election campaign. "The FBI and the bipartisan Senate Intelligence Committee are continuing to investigate Russia's role in the election". "I'm not under investigation", he said. Angus King, an independent who caucuses with Democrats, told CNN that he thought the committee's professional staff could use the former G-Man.
"Comprehensive tax reform just got an very bad lot harder, as did almost every other challenge facing the nation, both foreign and domestic: infrastructure, health care, immigration, trade and others", former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg wrote in a column published by Bloomberg News.