President Trump appeared to acknowledge on Friday in an interview that his tweet hinting of taped conversations with James B. Comey was intended to influence the fired F.B.I. director’s testimony before Congress, and he emphasized that he committed “no obstruction” of the inquiries into whether his campaign colluded with Russia.
The interview, with “Fox & Friends,” was shown one day after the president tweeted what most people in Washington had already come to believe: that he had not made recordings of his conversations with Mr. Comey.
Instead, the president explained in the television interview, his tweets were referring to the possibility that anyone could have taped those discussions.
“I’ve been reading about it for the last couple of months about the seriousness of the horribleness of the situation with surveillance all over the place,” the president said in the interview. “So you never know what’s out there, but I didn’t tape, and I don’t have any tape and I didn’t tape.”
When the Fox interviewer suggested that the possible existence of recordings might make sure Mr. Comey “stayed honest in those hearings,” Mr. Trump paused before responding, “Well, it wasn’t very stupid, I can tell you that.”
Referring to Mr. Comey, Mr. Trump said, “When he found out that I, you know, that there may be tapes out there whether it’s governmental tapes or anything else and who knows, I think his story may have changed.”