At the time he was sacked, Comey had been overseeing the investigation into possible coordination between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign for months.
The first meeting with Trump after the inauguration occurred on January 27, during a private dinner at the White House that Comey came to view as an attempt by the president to "create some sort of patronage relationship".
One of the most notable came in February, when Comey said the president cleared the Oval Office before pressuring him to drop the bureau's ongoing investigation of Michael Flynn, the president's former national security adviser.
It's that dynamic as well as the possibility of official obstruction of justice that has captured Congress' interest - and the public's curiosity as well. Comey will testify that President Donald Trump sought his "loyalty" and asked what could be done to "lift the cloud" of investigation shadowing his White House, according to prepared remarks released ahead of his appearance on Capitol Hill on June 8, 2017.
The Senate Intelligence Committee posted Comey's explosive seven-page statement on its website Wednesday afternoon, ending speculation about what Comey would say to the panel on Thursday.
-Did the president ask Comey for his loyalty? Yes.
Comey would not say in public session whether he believes the president colluded with Russian Federation during the election.
"If what Director Comey says in his opening statement is true, if the president directly urged him to drop the investigation into [former national security adviser] Mike Flynn", host Rachel Maddow said".
"In an abrupt shift, he turned the conversation to FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, saying he hadn't brought up "the McCabe thing" because I had said McCabe was honorable, although (Terry) McAuliffe was close to the Clintons and had given him (I think he meant Deputy Director McCabe's wife) campaign money".
Republicans though were uneasy about Comey's statement and other emerging allegations.
Comey also said he had a friend share one of his memos, which are unclassified, with The New York Times to help inspire the appointment of a special counsel. "Three in person and six on the phone".
Comey maintains he approached Attorney General Jeff Sessions with concerns. "I took the opportunity to implore the Attorney General to prevent any future direct communication between the President and me", Comey said. Comey also informs Trump on the existence of unverified material collected by a former British agent. Comey notes he had nine one-on-one interactions with Trump over a four-month stretch, compared to two private conversations with President Barack Obama between September 2013 and the end of 2016.
The White House said Monday it would not invoke executive privilege over Comey's upcoming testimony - officials predicted it would look bad otherwise.
Comey, who is used to not answering lawmakers' questions about ongoing investigations, is not likely to say anything Thursday that could interfere with, or undercut, the ongoing federal investigation into Russian Federation ties.
In the wake of the firing, the Justice Department named an special prosecutor, former FBI director Robert Mueller, to lead the government's investigation.
"When I learned that I had been fired, for that reason I immediately came home as a private citizen", Comey testified.
The Trump administration may have (wisely) foregone the privilege claim, but they apparently plan to remind everyone of Comey's credibility issues.
"Despite this sparseness", he wrote, "or maybe I should say because of it, it is the most shocking single document compiled about the official conduct of the public duties of any president since the release of the Watergate tapes".