Donald Trump is under fire for saying the FBI’s reputation is “in tatters” over its probe into alleged collusion between Russia and his campaign.
Ex-FBI director James Comey and former attorney general Sally Yates, who were both fired by Mr Trump, led criticism.
Republican senator Lindsey Graham said Trump’s comments and tweets on ongoing investigations were at his “own peril”.
Meanwhile there have been suggestions the US president may have admitted obstructing justice in his tweets.
Mr Trump posted a barrage of criticism on Sunday morning, saying the FBI’s reputation was “in tatters” and was at the “worst in history”, while again accusing it of failure in its treatment of his former opponent for the presidency, Hillary Clinton.
Mrs Clinton was investigated by the FBI ahead of the election after it emerged she had used a private email server to conduct state department business, but no charges were brought against Mrs Clinton or her team.
He seized on news that an FBI officer had been dismissed from the investigation after he was discovered to have made anti-Trump remarks in text messages, tweeting: “Report: ‘ANTI-TRUMP FBI AGENT LED CLINTON EMAIL PROBE’ Now it all starts to make sense!”
Mr Trump denies that his team colluded with Russia to get him elected, but four members have now been charged as part of the FBI inquiry lead by Robert Mueller.
I had to fire General Flynn because he lied to the Vice President and the FBI. He has pled guilty to those lies. It is a shame because his actions during the transition were lawful. There was nothing to hide!
A White House lawyer later said he had written the tweet and that the controversial line had actually been an error.
The president fired Mr Flynn in February for misrepresenting the nature of his contacts with Russian ambassador Sergei Kislyak to Vice-President Mike Pence.
Then-FBI director James Comey alleges that in a private meeting the day after Mr Flynn was fired, the president asked him to show leniency to the dismissed aide, saying, “I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go.”
Tweeting on Sunday, Mr Trump issued a fresh denial that he had pushed Mr Comey to drop the investigation into Mr Flynn.
Senior Democrats and legal experts said that if Mr Trump had known Mr Flynn had lied, then tried to get Mr Comey not to investigate him, that could be tantamount obstruction of justice.
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