Former FBI Director James Comey agrees to private disposition with House Republicans

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The case initially was set to be heard by Judge Timothy Kelly, a Trump appointee, then was reassigned randomly to McFadden, also a Trump appointee, after Kelly likely recused from the case. "So will sit in the dark, but Republicans agree I'm free to talk when done and transcript released in 24 hours", he said. "This is the closest I can get to public testimony", he said.

Former FBI director James Comey has backed down from his legal challenge and agreed to testify in private to the House of Representatives judiciary committee.

The committee is expected to question Comey about decisions made by the FBI in 2016, including the FBI's investigations into Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server, and possible collusion between Russian Federation and Trump's presidential campaign.

The detente ended yesterday with Comey agreeing to testify privately, but retaining the ability to speak publicly about his testimony.

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"Mr. Comey will join us for a closed-door transcribed interview later this week", the statement said.

"That, of course, remains to be seen, it hasn't happened yet, but the counsel for the House and the counsel for Mr. Comey have been working cooperatively and I expect that'll happen", he added.

Democrats have complained that the Republican-led inquiry is a partisan effort to undermine Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into the Russia-related claims.

Comey agreed to sit for a voluntary interview on Friday under terms that include that "so long as the interview proceeds as a voluntary interview, an Federal Bureau of Investigation representative will be present to advise concerning the disclosure of Federal Bureau of Investigation information", said his lawyer David N. Kelley.

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Based on the agreement, Comey was withdrawing his legal motion, and the committee would withdraw its subpoena, Kelley said. "The Committee intends to issue a joint report (together with [the House Oversight Committee]) before the end of the 115th Congress - i.e., in a few short weeks", lawyers for the House Judiciary Committee wrote in a court filing Friday.

Comey tweeted he was "grateful for a fair hearing" from the judge.

House Republicans have also subpoenaed former Attorney General Loretta Lynch to testify about whether her conversations with former President Bill Clinton on a Phoenix tarmac influenced the Clinton investigation.

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