President Donald Trump called in to his favorite TV show, "Fox & Friends," on Thursday morning.
He responded to news that his choice for secretary of Veterans Affairs was withdrawing his nomination after mounting misconduct allegations emerged.
Trump went on a lengthy rant about the Russia investigation, his alleged affair with Stormy Daniels, and his 2016 election win over Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.
President Donald Trump called in to "Fox & Friends" on Thursday in what turned into a lengthy rant in which Trump alluded to one of the most salacious allegations in the so-called Steele dossier.
Trump told the show's hosts that he did stay overnight in Russia in 2013. Flight records show Trump flew to Moscow in 2013, when the country hosted the Miss Universe pageant.
Trump's stay at the Ritz-Carlton hotel was one of several events mentioned in the dossier, an explosive collection of memos authored by former British spy Christopher Steele, which alleged collusion between Trump and Russia.
According to the dossier, Trump rented the presidential suite at the hotel and hired prostitutes to perform sexual acts in front of him that involved urination. The hotel is said to be monitored by Russian intelligence, and the dossier alleged that Russian authorities obtained footage of the events, which they then used as leverage over Trump.
Former FBI Director James Comey, who Trump fired last May, wrote in contemporaneous memos that Trump told him he didn't stay overnight.
"He said he had spoken to people who had been on the Miss Universe trip with him and they had reminded him that he didn't stay overnight in Russia for that," Comey wrote in one memo.
Comey continued: "He said he arrived in the morning, did events, then showered and dressed for the pageant at the hotel (he didn't say the hotel name) and left for the pageant. Afterwards, he returned only to get his things because they departed for New York by plane that same night. He said he thought maybe he should ask me to investigate the whole thing to prove it was a lie."
On Thursday morning, Trump insisted, "I never said I left immediately" and accused Comey of lying.
"They're phony memos. He didn't write those memos accurately," Trump said.
"I went to Russia for a day or so, for a day or two, because I owned the Miss Universe pageant, so I went there to watch it because it was near Moscow," he said. "So I go there to Russia. Now 'I didn't go there' — everybody knows, the logs are there, the planes are there, and he said I didn't stay there at night. Of course I stayed there. I stayed there a very short period of time, but of course I stayed. Well his memos said, 'I left immediately' — I never said that!"
Trump's call to the show came amid news that his nominee to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs, Adm. Ronny Jackson, was withdrawing his nomination amid mounting allegations of misconduct.
"I think he was awake, and he had a lot to say," one of the hosts said of Trump after the president's half-hour interview.