In an extraordinary statement released after he was fired by President Trump this Friday — just before he was eligible to received full pension benefits — former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe said he was targeted due to Trump’s “war” against Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
“This attack on my credibility is one part of a larger effort not just to slander me personally, but to taint the FBI, law enforcement and intelligence professionals more generally,” McCabe said in a statement just after Attorney General Jeff Session announced the decision.
“It is part of this administration’s ongoing war on the FBI and the efforts of the special counsel investigation, which continue to this day,” he continued. “Their persistence in this campaign only highlights the importance of the special counsel’s work.”
In his statement, McCabe hinted that he possesses knowledge that could be used in Mueller’s investigation.
“Here is the reality: I am being singled out and treated this way because of the role I played, the actions I took, and the events I witnessed in the aftermath of the firing of (FBI director) James Comey,” he said.
McCabe added that the Department of Justice Inspector General’s report on his role in the handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server was ramped up “after my testimony to the House Intelligence Committee revealed that I would corroborate former Director Comey’s accounts of his discussions with the president.”
“The [Inspector General’s office] focus on me and this report became a part of an unprecedented effort by the administration, driven by the president himself, to remove me from my position, destroy my reputation, and possibly strip me of a pension that I worked 21 years to earn,” McCabe continued.
“The accelerated release of the report, and the punitive actions taken in response, make sense only when viewed through this lens. Thursday’s comments from the White House are just the latest example of this,” he said, referring to White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders referring to him as a “bad actor.”
This Saturday morning, President Trump tweeted that McCabe’s firing was a “great day” for democracy.
Andrew McCabe FIRED, a great day for the hard working men and women of the FBI – A great day for Democracy. Sanctimonious James Comey was his boss and made McCabe look like a choirboy. He knew all about the lies and corruption going on at the highest levels of the FBI!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 17, 2018
In the immediate wake of McCabe’s firing, numerous press reports revealed that he kept notes of his interactions with Trump — notes that he turned over to Mueller to be used in the investigation.
“Articles too numerous to count have leveled every sort of false, defamatory and degrading allegation against us,” he said. “The president’s tweets have amplified and exacerbated it all. He called for my firing. He called for me to be stripped of my pension after more than 20 years of service. And all along we have said nothing, never wanting to distract from the mission of the FBI by addressing the lies told and repeated about us.”
“No more,” McCabe added.
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