Ex-FBI Director Comey set to testify behind closed doors on Capitol Hill

FBI Director James Comey listens on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, May 3, 2017, prior to testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing: 'Oversight of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.' THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

WASHINGTON (SBG) - After weeks of back-and-forth, lawmakers on Capitol Hill have finally reached a deal with former FBI Director James Comey to testify privately before the House Judiciary Committee on Friday.

The agreement will allow Comey to talk publicly about what happened behind closed doors with members of Congress. A transcript of the interview will also be released 24 hours after the interview with lawmakers ends.

Comey had been pressing for a public hearing but said "this is the close I can get to public testimony."

But Democrats believe that the transcript will delayed partly because of security concerns, since lawmakers and Comey will likely talk about sensitive and classified material.

Chairman Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Calif. And other Republican committee members declined to answers our questions on Thursday about what they expect to learn from Comey.

In a statement released Sunday, Goodlatte said “Mr. Comey will join us for a closed-door transcribed interview later this week. We will release the transcript of his interview to the public as soon as possible after the interview, in the name of our combined desire for transparency.”

Republicans privately say they want to know more about the Justice Department and FBI’s role in investigating possible collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign during the 2016 presidential election. And, how the Justice Department secured a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court or FISA warrant to monitor members of the Trump team.

“It’s an important piece of the ongoing puzzle on how the whole investigation got started,” said C. Boyden Gray, former White House Counsel under President George H.W. Bush. “What could have happened with FISA warrant and a few other things is something the American public has to know.”

Comey’s appearance before lawmakers comes right before democrats takes control of the house next year. Democrats are planning to tackle a different set of investigations -- and so far none of them include Comey.

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