Jay Sekulow, President Donald Trump’s personal attorney, Sunday insisted the president is not under investigation for obstruction of justice for firing FBI Director James Comey, his tweet last week notwithstanding.

Sekulow, appearing on CNN’s “State of the Union” and NBC’s “Meet the Press,” said repeatedly the president “is not under investigation” and his tweet was merely a response to a Washington Post story based on anonymous sources that said Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller had expanded his inquiry to include whether Trump has attempted to obstruct justice.

Trump tweeted Friday, seemingly confirming the Post story:

Trump repeatedly has criticized the investigation into whether Russia interfered with the 2016 president election and whether anyone on his campaign staff colluded. The tweet referred to a critique of Comey’s handling of the FBI investigation into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s private email server.

Trump admitted, however, in an NBC television interview he fired Comey because of the Russia investigation and then reportedly told Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov that he felt the firing relieved great pressure on his administration over the whole mess, calling Comey a “real nut job.”

Sekulow, who also is chief counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice, insisted Trump was being ironic, not confirming the Post story, which Sekulow called “unsubstantiated.”

“The president sent out that tweet directly in response to the Washington Post story, with the five, anonymous, unnamed sources from unnamed agencies. So that's why he put that in the tweet. So look, the president has been, as you know, very effective in utilizing social media,” Sekulow said.

Sekulow, at one point, held up the letter from Attorney General Jeff Sessions and the Comey critique and said the president has a constitutional right to fire anyone in his administration. He also recommended Comey be investigated for leaking the memos he wrote on his private conversations with Trump.

Read: Trump On Kushner Russia Investigation: President Calls Fake News Contact Controversy

Comey testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee Trump asked him to pledge his loyalty and whether he could “see my way clear” to dropping his investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn’s contacts with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. After he was fired and Trump hinted there were tapes of their conversations, Comey asked a friend to leak his memos to the New York Times.

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., said on “Meet the Press” the best thing for the administration is for a full investigation to be completed but said he cannot divine whether Trump’s tweets are designed to pressure Mueller or Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

Trump has said he does not believe Russia attempted to influence the U.S. election despite the evidence turned up by U.S. intelligence agencies.

“I think it'll be good for the president, good for the country, to have a full and credible investigation so no one can ever say, ‘You didn't look at this, or you didn't look at that.’ That's what needs to happen, I believe that's what will happen. And the result of that will be good for America, so that we can move on to take some of the other important issues that are confronting us,” Rubio said, adding Trump “has a right to his opinion on these issues. Bottom line is, we're going to continue to do our work.”

Read: Only 29% Of Americans Approve Of Trump's Actions

Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, said on “Meet the Press” he thinks the president thinks the investigation undermines his presidency and is hoping it just will go away.

“The real question is whether there were people in the Trump campaign … who were in touch with the Russians. … The underlying question is the Russians tried to screw around with our elections and the state elections, which I find scary,” King said.


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Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who argued earlier this week a president cannot be guilty of obstruction of justice even though Gingrich voted in favor of an obstruction count against former President Bill Clinton and the fact that former President Richard Nixon resigned rather than face impeachment for obstruction, said on ABC’s “This Week” that though he has “no problem with Bob Mueller as a person … I [have] every problem with how he’s – what he’s doing … [because] to be a close friend of Comey, which is weird, under Justice Department rules, Mueller can’t investigate Comey.”

Rep. Adam Schiff of California, the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, accused Trump of attempting to take down Mueller just as his investigation is getting underway.

“And the question is why? And I think the answer is they want to lay the foundation to discredit whatever Bob Mueller comes up with. They're essentially engaging in a scorched earth litigation strategy that is beginning with trying to discredit the prosecutor. And that's all that's happening here. I don't think we should acquiesce in the besmirchment of this good man. And we ought to let him do his job,” Schiff said on “This Week.”