Last week, I wrote ‘Senate Intelligence Committee: “no direct evidence of conspiracy between Trump campaign and Russia”‘.

On Sunday, former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe appeared for a half-hour on CBS’s 60 Minutes in an interview with Scott Pelley.

McCabe is currently doing a book tour to promote The Threat: How the FBI Protects America in the Age of Terror and Trump.

On March 16, 2018, President Trump tweeted:

Two weeks earlier, Fox News reported that the Department of Justice’s Inspector General (IG), Michael Horowitz, was expected to (emphases mine):

criticize former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe for approving a leak of information about the Hillary Clinton investigation to The Wall Street JournalThe New York Times reported late Thursday.

According to the Times, which cited four people familiar with the investigation into the department’s handling of the Clinton probe, McCabe will be censured for disclosing the investigation’s existence to the Journal.

The Journal report in question, which was published Oct. 30, 2016, recounts a conversation in which McCabe sparred with a senior Justice Department official over an investigation into the Clinton Foundation. The Journal — which cited sources including “one person close to Mr. McCabe” — said McCabe insisted that the FBI should move forward with its investigation, while the Justice Department official expressed concern about its potential effect on the presidential election.

McCabe, a frequent target of President Donald Trump’s ire, left his position as FBI deputy director in January and is scheduled to retire later this month. He had served for several months as acting director following Trump’s firing last May of FBI Director James Comey.

Spokespeople for the Justice Department, the FBI and the inspector general had no immediate comment on the report Thursday evening …

Trump verbally attacked McCabe during the campaign and again as president because McCabe’s wife, during a failed state Senate run, had accepted campaign contributions from the political action committee of then-Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a close Clinton ally.

David J Harris Jr and Real Clear Politics have more detail, dating from January 2018.

On March 14, a Fox producer for DoJ news tweeted:

On March 15, the Washington Examiner reported that McCabe was ‘still holding on to his retirement’:

Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe is holding onto his pension just days before he is set to officially retire.

McCabe was at the Justice Department to meet with Scott Schools, the most senior career attorney in the department, as well as other officials, for a majority of the afternoon Thursday, to make a case why he should be allowed to retire and not be fired.

Schools reports to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who in turn reports to Attorney General Jeff Sessions. The decision to fire McCabe before Sunday, and thus strip McCabe of his full pension and benefits, is in Sessions’ hands.

The_Donald featured a fiery thread in response:

So, This Lying, Leaking, Lawless LOSER Is Pleading To The DOJ Today To Keep His Pension? WE, The Taxpaying Citizens Demand This CRIMINAL Receive NOTHING And Be INDICTED For His CRIMES!!

Then, the next day:

CBS News, in reporting McCabe’s meeting the previous Friday pointed out:

If McCabe is fired, it is believed his only avenue of appeal would be to file a lawsuit to try to reclaim his pension.

Twitter exploded.

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-California) was indignant:

So was the former CIA director, directing his ire at President Trump:

Later that day, McCabe issued a lengthy statement (click on image to see it in full, also available at CNN):

His statement elicited this response:

. McCabe, you disgraced the oath you swore. You harmed the nation by your deceit. You took 1/2 million dollars for your wife’s campaign from Hillary’s guy, McAuliffe, the said you should be FIRED. You deserve it.

McCabe’s lawyer also issued a statement. (Apparently, his lawyer — a former Inspector General for the DoJ — supported the current Inspector General’s report until McCabe was implicated by it.)

The DoJ disagreed with McCabe and his lawyer:

I hope that FBI Director Christopher Wray received all of McCabe’s documentation about the 2016 election.

There were also newsy snippets:

On March 17, The Hill, among other media outlets, noted that McCabe’s weekend statement seemed to contradict James Comey’s testimony from May 2017 about relaying sensitive information to the media.

News emerged that McCabe wrote memoranda of his conversations with President Trump and gave those to Robert Mueller. CBS reported that details of James Comey’s firing were included.

Fox News correspondent Adam Housely said that McCabe’s dismissal was a morale boost to FBI agents.

On March 18, TownHall posted an editorial, ‘The Coming Collusion Bloodbath’. Nearly one year on, we could be at that point:

That Comey, McCabe, and others have practiced an obvious double standard in the email case of Hillary Clinton where ample evidence caused 106 of the case agents and attorneys working on the case to believe indictment would occur, and simultaneously going to such extraordinary measures through the assistance of essentially Hillary’s campaign operation to attempt to thwart the outcome of the election is more than enough reason to go after them on a criminal basis alone.

That McCabe reportedly lied to the low key Inspector General, while attempting to send General Michael Flynn to prison for lying to the same FBI is of highest hypocrisy.

Before McCabe was fired, Reddit had censored discussions about his ‘corruption issues’. Now that he was gone, they could be discussed freely once more.

Attention then turned to the McCabe’s connections with Hillary Clinton. A New York radio host tweeted:

The following 2017 video resurfaced. It shows that McCabe had (still has?) a home in Chappaqua, New York, where the Clintons live (start at 5:00 in):

On April 13, Inspector General Horowitz issued his report:

Fox News explained:

The report, handed over to Congress on Friday and obtained by Fox News, looked at a leak to The Wall Street Journal about an FBI probe of the Clinton Foundation.

The report says that McCabe authorized the leak and then misled investigators about it, leaking in a way that did not fall under a “public interest” exception.

[W]e concluded that McCabe’s decision to confirm the existence of the CF investigation through an anonymously sourced quote, recounting the content of a phone call with a senior department official in a manner designed to advance his personal interests at the expense of department leadership, was clearly not within the public interest exception,” the report says …

Sessions said that McCabe “made an unauthorized disclosure to the news media and lacked candor − including under oath − on multiple occasions.”

James Gagliano, a retired FBI supervisory special agent said that, according to the IG’s report, firing McCabe was the right thing to do. He says that whether you are a Marine or a special agent of the FBI, the same rules apply:

In May, FBI agents wanted to be subpoenaed in order to testify against Comey and McCabe:

Questions arose in Congress. The Gateway Pundit reported that Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) wanted answers about the FBI’s treatment of General Flynn.

Early in June:

Allegations arose about McCabe’s involvement in the 302s (FBI reports) regarding General Flynn:

On September 6, the Washington Post reported that a grand jury had been investigating McCabe ‘for months’:

an indication the probe into whether he misled officials exploring his role in a controversial media disclosure has intensified, two people familiar with the matter said.

The grand jury has summoned more than one witness, the people said, and the case is ongoing. The people declined to identify those who had been called to testify.

The presence of the grand jury shows prosecutors are treating the matter seriously, locking in the accounts of witnesses who might later have to testify at a trial. But such panels are sometimes used only as investigative tools, and it remains unclear if McCabe will ultimately be charged.

A spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office in D.C., which has been handling the probe, declined to comment.

Michael Bromwich, a lawyer for McCabe, said in a statement after this report was published online that he had been confident McCabe would not be charged, absent “inappropriate pressure from high levels of the Administration.”

“Unfortunately, such pressure has continued, with the President targeting Mr. McCabe in numerous additional tweets,” Bromwich said. The lawyer also raised questions about the timing of the news report on the grand jury.

ZeroHedge had more (emphases in the original):

Specifically, McCabe was fired for lying about authorizing an F.B.I. spokesman and attorney to tell Devlin Barrett of the Wall St. Journal – just days before the 2016 election, that the FBI had not put the brakes on a separate investigation into the Clinton Foundation, at a time in which McCabe was coming under fire for his wife taking a $467,500 campaign contribution from Clinton proxy pal, Terry McAuliffe. 

In order to deal with his legal woes, McCabe set up a GoFundMe “legal defense fund” which stopped accepting donations, after support for the fired bureaucrat took in over half a million dollars – roughly $100,000 more than his wife’s campaign took from McAuliffe as McCabe’s office was investigating Clinton and her infamous charities.

On September 17, Trump tweeted about the two FBI employees who were part of the group working against his presidency:

On September 18, the Gateway Pundit reported on the press release for McCabe’s upcoming book, The Threat, mentioned above. The press release quoted McCabe as saying (emphases mine):

I wrote this book because the president’s attacks on me symbolize his destructive effect on the country as a whole. He is undermining America’s safety and security, and eroding public confidence in its institutions. His attacks on the most crucial institutions of government, and on the professionals who serve within them, should make every American stand up and take notice.

On September 21 came the first mention of reports that Rod Rosenstein offered to wear or joked about ‘wearing a wire’ for a meeting with Trump:

A few weeks earlier, President Trump had intended to declassify various unredacted documents. By September 22, he had backtracked. The DoJ advised him that declassification could harm the Mueller probe. In addition, US allies warned against declassification for security reasons. Trump instructed IG Horowitz to review them instead. Had Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein any influence on Trump on this subject? Declassification would have been a huge risk for Rosenstein — and McCabe.

On September 27, the then-House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HSPCI) Chairman Devin Nunes (R-California) said that he planned to release testimony from 70 or more witnesses who were interviewed in the HSPCI’s own Trump-Russia probe. The Daily Caller reported:

Nunes said that between 70 and 80 percent of the transcripts do not contain classified information. The remaining transcripts would have to be reviewed by the office of the director of national intelligence. Nunes said that review process “would only take a matter of days.”

Nunes and other House Republicans have also led a push to get President Donald Trump to declassify and release documents related to the FBI and Justice Department’s collusion investigation.

It also transpired that McCabe and Rosenstein were feuding via the media. McCabe represented the faction that wanted to end Trump’s presidency. Rosenstein represented the people currently at the DoJ and FBI.

Rosenstein was using the Washington Post to get his story out. McCabe was using the New York Times.

One example of this was when the Rosenstein-wear-a-wire story appeared in The New York Times:

On October 9, The Hill‘s John Solomon reported that Rosenstein was desperate to downplay the story. However, released testimony from former FBI lawyer James Baker indicated that this was no joke:

Baker’s story lays bare an extraordinary conversation in which at least some senior FBI officials thought it within their purview to try to capture the president on tape and then go to the president’s own Cabinet secretaries, hoping to persuade the senior leaders of the administration to remove the president from power.

Even more extraordinary is the timing of such discussions: They occurred, according to Baker’s account, in the window around the firing of FBI Director James Comey. Could it be that the leaders of a wounded, stunned FBI were seeking retribution for their boss’s firing with a secret recording operation?

I doubt this is the power that Congress intended to be exercised when it created the FBI a century ago, or the circumstances in which the authors of the 25th Amendment imagined a president’s removal could be engineered.

This wasn’t a president who was incapacitated at the time. He was fully exercising his powers — but in a way the FBI leadership did not like.

And that makes the FBI’s involvement in the tape-record-then-dump-Trump conversations overtly political — even if Rosenstein believed the whole idea was farcical.

Also:

Keep in mind, this is the same FBI that, a few months earlier during the 2016 election, had its top counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok talking to Page — his lover and the top lawyer to McCabe — about using their official powers to “stop” Trump in the election and having an “insurance policy” against the GOP nominee. That insurance policy increasingly looks like an unverified dossier created by British intelligence operative Christopher Steele — a Trump hater himself — that was bought and paid for by the Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign through their mutual law firm.

You walk away from the Baker interview with little doubt that the FBI leadership in that 2016-17 time frame saw itself as far more than a neutral investigative agency but actually as a force to stop Trump’s election before it happened and then maybe reversing it after the election was over,” said a source directly familiar with the congressional investigation.

The following day, the Washington Post published an article outlining the tension between McCabe and Rosenstein. The FBI higher-ups did not like that Rosenstein had recommended in writing that President Trump fire James Comey. DoJ officials did not like that the FBI, McCabe in particular, opened an investigation on Trump immediately after Comey’s departure. WaPo reported that the two quarrelled shortly after Robert Mueller was appointed — in front of him.

Rosenstein, incidentally, had allegedly already made his ‘wear a wire’ comment.

The subject of the meeting in question was whether Rosenstein or McCabe should recuse themselves from involvement in the Mueller probe:

Rosenstein wanted McCabe out of the Russia probe, and McCabe felt differently, arguing that it was the deputy attorney general, not the head of the FBI, who should step away from the case.

Although neither recused himself:

The McCabe-Rosenstein relationship has only worsened with time …

The Rosenstein-McCabe relationship has come under renewed scrutiny as lawmakers have demanded answers about memos written by McCabe and his then-senior counsel, FBI lawyer Lisa Page, about the discussions on May 16, 2017, in which McCabe wrote that Rosenstein suggested recording the president and discussed the 25th Amendment.

Rosenstein was due to meet that week with The House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform committees about the DoJ, but the meeting never happened.

On October 11, the Washington Examiner reported that the FBI was delaying publication of McCabe’s book, The Threat. It would not appear until February 2019:

McCabe was fired by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in March, less than 48 hours before his retirement day because of “allegations of misconduct” found by the Justice Department’s Office of the Inspector General. McCabe, has disputed the IG report, and is now the subject of a grand jury inquiry.

According to the FBI’s employment agreement, all disclosure of information must be reviewed and adhere to the FBI’s “Prepublication Review Policy Guide,” made official in 2015.

Although there is more to cover on McCabe, this is a good point at which to bring us to the present day.

On Monday, February 18, 2019, President Trump pulled no punches:

Is this the first time President Trump has tweeted the letters ‘t-r-e-a-s-o-n’?

Here’s ‘treason’ again:

Trump was on fire:

We can only hope that the tables start turning soon.

Perhaps the new attorney general, Bill Barr, will set things in motion.