FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe was fired by the Justice Department on Friday, and in a statement, Attorney General Jeff Sessions explained just why McCabe had to go.
McCabe’s termination — which occurred just days before he would have been eligible for a lifetime pension — came after the DOJ determined he displayed a blatant disregard for the truth when giving testimony to investigators about the bureau’s probe into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s use of private email server.
“Pursuant to Department Order 1202, and based on the report of the Inspector General, the findings of the FBI Office of Professional Responsibility, and the recommendation of the Department’s senior career official, I have terminated the employment of Andrew McCabe effective immediately,” Sessions said in a statement, according to Fox News.
“I have terminated the employment of Andrew McCabe effective immediately,” Sessions added, before noting that, “Both the OIG and FBI OPR reports concluded that Mr. McCabe had made an unauthorized disclosure to the news media and lacked candor — including under oath — on multiple occasions.”
The attorney general pointed out that FBI employees are expected to “adhere to the highest standards of honesty, integrity, and accountability.” Apparently, McCabe failed in that regard.
The move to fire McCabe drew praise from many, with President Donald Trump writing in a Twitter post that justice had effectively been served and that Friday 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,” Trump tweeted.
“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!”
However, The Atlantic‘s Adam Sewer suggested there is more to the story of both McCabe and former FBI Director James Comey — who Trump fired last year — and that it has much less to do with the integrity of the employees and more to do with McCabe drawing the ire of Trump himself.
According to Sewer, the termination leaves numerous questions regarding the “independence of both the Justice Department and the FBI” as special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation bears down on Washington, with McCabe’s firing effectively warning federal law enforcement officials not to “displease the president.”
McCabe had reportedly been a witness in Mueller’s investigation, which is looking into Comey’s termination last year and whether or not the current administration obstructed justice in any way.
Though Republican lawmakers in Washington hold fast to the claim that McCabe was intentionally dishonest, the former bureau employee put out a statement of his own following his termination and deemed the move to be nothing more than retaliation.
“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 James Comey,” McCabe said.
McCabe further stated that the move was due to his willingness to corroborate Comey’s own testimony.
“The OIG’s 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,” he said.
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