Former FBI Director James Comey is testifying before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday. Before Comey was fired on May 9, he led the FBI's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and potential ties between Trump associates and Russia. That probe is now led by a special prosecutor.
The Senate committee posted Comey's opening statement a day early. In it, Comey says President Trump asked him for "loyalty" at a dinner in January and later in the Oval Office said he "hope[d] you can let" the investigation into his former national security adviser Michael Flynn "go." The White House has denied that Trump ever asked for the investigation to be shut down.
Here are his full prepared remarks, annotated by NPR journalists.