In the days after Comey's firing, some lawmakers, former Justice officials and people who knew Rosenstein wondered if he had been forced to write the politically charged memo for Trump.
It can mean the "target" or "subject" of an investigation, but it can also mean someone merely "mentioned once speculatively", observed criminal defense attorney Ken White. "It makes it very clear that what Donald Trump was trying to do was to end the Russian investigation".
The newspaper cited unnamed sources familiar with the probe as saying a current top White House official has been identified as a "significant person of interest", without disclosing the name of the person.
White House hopes that Trump could leave scandalous allegations at home were crushed in a one-two punch of revelations that landed shortly after his departure.
Trump's trip, which also includes stops in Israel, Italy and Belgium next week, has been billed by the administration as a chance to visit places sacred to three of the world's major religions while giving him time to meet with Arab, Israeli and European leaders.
Mr Comey is due to testify to an open session of the Senate Intelligence Committee after being fired from his position as head of the intelligence agency.
Former FBI director James Comey told associates Trump asked him to shut down an investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn.
It comes following a week of increasing controversy for President Trump following his firing of former Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey.
Slaven Bilic targets top-six finish for West Ham next season
We were without eight players but still had a decent team so that shows that squad-wise, with the quantity of the players, we are okay.
Democrat Zoe Lofgren calls for kicking Turkey bodyguards out of U.S.
On Wednesday, Turkey's official Anadolu news agency labeled the protesters Kurdish "supporters of terror". Moments later, a group of Erdogan's bodyguards rush the protesters and begin violently hitting them.
Greenville, Butler County law enforcement honored for commitment
He tossed a "45" hat midway through his remarks to a young boy he identified as Micah, whose father had died in the line of duty. There have been no on-duty deaths among the Bullhead City, Kingman or Lake Havasu City police departments.
The White House executive summary "contained Mr. Trump's comments, was based on notes taken from inside the Oval Office and has been circulated as the official account of the meeting", the Times said.
"The investigation would have always continued, and obviously, the termination of Comey would not have ended it", Spicer said, adding that the real story was the leaks of "private and highly classified conversations".
But the president undercut that argument a day later, telling NBC News, "When I made a decision to just do it, I said to myself - I said, you know, this Russian Federation thing with Trump and Russian Federation is a made-up story".
"By grandstanding and politicising the investigation into Russia's actions, James Comey created unnecessary pressure on our ability to engage and negotiate with Russia", White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said.
While speaking with Russian Ambassador to the US Sergey Kislyak and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Trump reportedly said, "I faced great pressure because of Russia".
"By grandstanding and politicizing the investigation into Russia's actions, James Comey created unnecessary pressure on our ability to engage and negotiate with Russian Federation", he said.
The Washington Post report underscored the seriousness of the investigation into possible collusion, which was taken over earlier this week by former FBI Director Robert Mueller, who was appointed as a special prosecutor.
The conversation reinforces the notion that the president dismissed Comey primarily because of the FBI's inquiry into possible collusion between Trump's campaign and Russian operatives. Comey publicly confirmed the existence of the investigation in March, telling Congress that his agents were investigating Russian efforts to influence the outcome of the presidential election and whether anyone in the Trump campaign had been involved.