Former FBI director James Comey has rejected an invitation to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee next week.
Comey, who was fired on Tuesday by President Trump, was invited for a closed session before the panel by Committee Chairman Richard Burr, R-N.C., and Vice Chairman Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va.
Warner said on MSNBC Friday afternoon that Comey would not appear before the committee on Tuesday. Burr's office confirmed to the Washington Examiner that Comey would not meet with the committee behind closed doors next week.
"It is our hope in the not-too-distant future that we can find a time for [Comey] to come in and talk to our Committee," Warner said on MSNBC.
Comey was leading the FBI's investigation into Russia's interference with the 2016 presidential election and alleged coordination with the Trump campaign before he was fired.
The closed session would have been Comey's first since his White House departure, and would have been a chance for him to tell lawmakers more details surrounding the FBI's ongoing investigation, and his sudden firing.
Comey's decision not to meet with the panel comes after a Friday tweet by Trump in which he issued a warning to the ousted FBI head. Comey "better hope that there are no 'tapes' of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!" the president wrote in a tweet.
The tweet appeared to be a response to a New York Times report that Trump demanded loyalty from Comey at a private White House dinner — something Comey refused. The White House and Trump have denied that the president demanded loyalty. However, they have been less definitive about the existence of "tapes."
On Friday, White House press secretary Sean Spicer did not confirm or deny the existence of secret recordings of conversations between Trump and Comey.
"The president has nothing further to add on that," Spicer said at the press briefing when asked about Trump's tweet, before declining to comment when asked why Trump sent the tweet or if the White House has recording devices in the residence or the West Wing.
Trump's move was backed up by a letter from Attorney General Jeff Sessions and a memo from Deputy Attorney Rod Rosenstein. However, Trump told NBC on Thursday that he was always planning on firing Comey because "he's a showboat" and because "the FBI has been in turmoil."
The White House has also said Comey's testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee enraged Trump.
In a farewell letter to friends and FBI agents, Comey said he is "not going to spend time on the decision or the way it was executed."