T.J. Kirkpatrick / The New York Times
Tuesday, March 21, 2017 | 2 a.m.
WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump began Monday as he has started so many other presidential mornings — by unleashing a blistering Twitter attack on critics who suggested his 2016 campaign colluded with the Russians.
By the afternoon the director of the FBI, James B. Comey, had systematically demolished his arguments in a remarkable public takedown of a sitting president.
Even a close ally of Trump, Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., the House Intelligence Committee chairman, conceded that “a gray cloud” of suspicion now hung over the White House by the end of day’s hearings.
The testimony of Comey and that of Adm. Michael S. Rogers, his National Security Agency counterpart, will most likely enervate and distract Trump’s administration for weeks, if not longer, overshadowing good news, like the impressive debut of Judge Neil M. Gorsuch, his Supreme Court nominee, on the first day of his confirmation hearings on Monday.
But it’s the obsessiveness and ferocity of Trump’s pushback against the Russian allegations, often untethered from fact or tact, that is making an uncertain situation…
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