Former FBI Director James Comey will testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday, June 8, regarding Russian interference in the 2016 election, committee leaders announced on Thursday.
The hearing will be one of the most highly anticipated events on Capitol Hill in years, after President Donald Trump suddenly fired Comey in May and a flood of news reports followed suggesting that the president tried to get Comey to squash an investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn.
After an open session in the morning, the committee will then be further briefed by Comey behind closed doors, said Sens. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) and Mark Warner (D-Va.).
In addition to Russia’s efforts to influence the presidential election, much of the questioning is likely to center around Comey’s termination, which shocked senators in both parties.
Trump has said that the Russia investigation was on his mind when he fired Comey, though administration officials have also said that Trump fired Comey based on the guidance of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Rosenstein, however, told senators in a closed briefing that it was clear Trump had already decided to fire the former director before asking for Rosenstein’s guidance.
Comey’s appearance will be the first since his firing. The former director agreed to appear before the Senate Intelligence Committee several weeks ago, but the committee first had to "deconflict" any of his testimony with Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of the Trump campaign’s ties with Russia.