Comey reportedly asked for more resources for Russia probe; DOJ calls reports 'totally false'

Key Points
  • Last week, James Comey requested more resources for the FBI probe into Russia's alleged election meddling, multiple news organizations reported
  • Comey is said to have made the request to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, according to media reports
  • The Justice Department flatly denied those allegations
Then-director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, James Comey testifies in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee, May 3, 2017 in Washington, DC.
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FBI Director James Comey had asked last week for more resources for the agency's investigation into Russia's alleged interference in the 2016 election, according to multiple media reports on Wednesday.

The New York Times, citing three officials with knowledge of the meeting, reported that Comey made his appeal last week in a meeting with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, the person who signed the memo that laid out the case for Comey's dismissal because of his public actions in the Hillary Clinton email investigation.

The Washington Post, CNN, The Wall Street Journal and NBC News all confirmed the Times' reporting.

A Justice Department spokesman told CNBC that the Times report was "totally false."

But a senior congressional official with direct knowledge of the matter told NBC that Comey had told members of Congress that he had requested more staff and money for the investigation.

Sen. Mark Warner, vice chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, told reporters on Wednesday that he would be the first to ask for more funding if needed.

Warner, a Virginia Democrat, said that Republican Sen. Richard Burr has indicated he would be supportive of such a request, if made. Burr serves as chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.

Comey had previously confirmed that the FBI's probe of Russia's role in the presidential election would also look into potential connections between Trump's campaign and Moscow.

Since President Donald Trump's surprise termination of Comey, the White House repeatedly disputed claims that the director's firing is linked to the FBI's investigation.

The FBI said it is not commenting on the reports at this time.

Correction: This story was revised to correct that Rosenstein's memo stopped short of recommending that Comey be fired.

— NBC News contributed reporting.