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Mr. Trump had a sharply different take on Mr. Clapper’s testimony.

“When James Clapper himself, and virtually everyone else with knowledge of the witch hunt, says there is no collusion, when does it end?” the president tweeted on Friday.

Mr. Clapper said on CNN that sensitive investigations were kept as compartmentalized as possible. In a separate appearance on ABC’s “This Week,” he said he had left counterintelligence investigations to the F.B.I.

Mr. Clapper also rebutted repeated assertions by the White House that Mr. Comey had lost the support of the F.B.I.’s rank and file, saying that the sudden dismissal on Tuesday was “very disturbing” to bureau employees.

The concerns about the firing have extended beyond Washington. An NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released on Sunday showed that 29 percent of Americans approved of the decision, and 38 percent disapproved.

Nikki R. Haley, the United States ambassador to the United Nations, also appearing on “This Week,” defended Mr. Trump’s firing of Mr. Comey.

“The president is the C.E.O. of his country,” Ms. Haley said. “He can hire and fire whoever he wants, that’s his right. Whether you agree with it or not, it’s the truth.”

Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson, appearing on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” said the firing did not make him concerned about his own independence. He said he had a “great relationship with the president.”

“I will never compromise my own values,” Mr. Tillerson added. “And so that’s my only line. And my values are those of the country.”

He also responded to an Op-Ed article in The New York Times last week by Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona, in which Mr. McCain argued that Mr. Tillerson’s remarks about decoupling foreign policy from human rights had “sent a message to oppressed people everywhere, ‘Don’t look to the United States for hope.’”

“I make a distinction between values and policy,” Mr. Tillerson said on “Meet the Press.” “A policy has to be tailored to the individual situation.”

Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina, also appearing on “Meet the Press,” advised Mr. Trump to rein in his public reaction to the F.B.I.’s Russia investigation.

“I would advise the president not to tweet or comment about the investigation as we go forward,” he said, adding, “The president needs to back off here and let the investigation go forward.”

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