From 1.10.18 N.Y. Times piece by Julie Hirschfeld Davis and Nicholas Fandos [see 8:35 mark]: “President Trump on Wednesday declined to commit to being interviewed by the special counsel investigating whether his campaign colluded with Russia to sway the 2016 election, backing off a promise he made last year to talk to Robert S. Mueller under oath.

‘“I’ll speak to attorneys,’ Trump told reporters in the East Room during a news conference with Prime Minister Erna Solberg of Norway, when asked whether he would speak with Mr. Mueller without preconditions. ‘We’ll see what happens.’

The dodge was a marked change from last June, when Mr. Trump defended his firing of the F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, denying that it was related to his handling of the Russia investigation, and said he would ‘100 percent’ be willing to give a sworn statement to Mr. Mueller.

“The president called Mr. Mueller’s probe and the ones being pursued by the Republican-led Congress a partisan ‘witch hunt’ and a ‘Democrat hoax.’

“’For 11 months, they’ve had this phony cloud over this administration, over our government, and it has hurt our government,’ Mr. Trump said. “When they have no collusion, and nobody’s found any collusion at any level, it seems unlikely that you’d even have an interview.”