WH official: Yes, Reince Priebus asked the FBI to knock down reports about Trump staff and Russia

White House chief of staff Reince Priebus asked a top FBI official to dispute media reports that President Donald Trump’s campaign advisers were frequently in touch with Russian intelligence agents during the election, a White House official said late Thursday.

The official said Priebus’ request came after the FBI told the White House it believed a New York Times report last week describing those contacts was not accurate. As of Thursday, the FBI had not stated that position publicly and there was no indication it planned to…

Priebus’ discussion with FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe sparked outrage among some Democrats, who said he was violating policies intended to limit communications between the law enforcement agency and the White House on pending investigations.

“The White House is simply not permitted to pressure the FBI to make public statements about a pending investigation of the president and his advisers,” said Michigan Rep. John Conyers, the top Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee.