James Comey appears before House Judiciary Committee in closed session

President Donald Trump

Former FBI Director James Comey has arrived on Capitol Hill for a closed-door interview with two House committees.

After Friday's session concluded, the president tore into Comey amid reports Comey's lawyers, including one from the Justice Department, have prevented him from answering a number of questions. Democrats will also attend the interview.

Republican lawmakers maintain that anti-Trump bias among senior officials resulted in the FBI focusing more on its probe into the Trump campaign's links to Russian Federation and less on its investigation into Democratic candidate Clinton's private email server.

The Democrats are advocating for Comey to give public testimony, but critics note that only gives each lawmaker 5-minute intervals to ask questions.

But unlike all previous witnesses who interviewed with the joint panel of House Judiciary Committee and Oversight and Government Reform Committee members for their probe into potential bias at the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Justice Department in 2016, Comey will not be bound to silence by a confidentiality agreement after the meeting.

Comey appeared for the interview after unsuccessfully fighting a subpoena in court.

Under a deal struck with the Judiciary Committee, Comey was to be free to speak about Friday's questioning afterward and a transcript was to be released.

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"It is being reported that Leakin' James Comey was told by Department of Justice attorneys not to answer the most important questions", Trump said.

The interview comes as Republican lawmakers are wrapping up a yearlong investigation into decisions made at the Justice Department during the 2016 presidential election. It is the first time he has answered lawmakers' questions since an explosive June 2016 hearing in which he asserted that President Donald Trump fired him to interfere with his investigation of Russia's ties to the Trump campaign.

Gowdy and House Judiciary Chairman Robert W. Goodlatte threw cold water on that proposal, arguing that previous public hearings with witnesses, like one with former Federal Bureau of Investigation counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok this past summer, were a political farce as members from both parties used the high-profile nature of the interview to grandstand.

Comey said he might answer questions after the session on Friday.

The U.S. president early Friday continued his social media assault on the actions the past two years of Comey, Mueller and what Trump perceives as unfair investigations.

Gowdy took issue with Comey's initial insistence that it be a public hearing, allegedly in the interest of transparency.

"Don't do it in a dark corner and don't do it in a way where all you do is leak information", said Comey's attorney, David Kelley. Yet it did not second-guess his conclusion that Clinton should not have been prosecuted, despite assertions by Trump and his supporters that anyone less politically connected would have been charged.

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