Deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe was fired by Jeff Sessions yesterday (March 16), with the accusation of not being transparent enough regarding the conversations he allowed between FBI officials and journalists.
Sessions, who rejected McCabe’s request to retire on Sunday, on his 50th birthday, causing the deputy attorney general to lose substantial early retirement benefits, said in a statement he decided to terminate the deputy director because he “made an unauthorized disclosure to the news media and lacked candor.”
Trump hailed the news on Twitter as “great for Democracy,” saying that “Sanctimonious James Comey was his boss and made McCabe look like a choirboy,” and hinting to lies and corruption at the highest FBI levels.
The president also repeated his claim that there was “no collusion” between his campaign and Russia, and hinted at McCabe’s firing as the expression of high-level FBI corruption that would be fueling the investigation. Trump’s lawyer John Dowd, too, wrote in a statement that the Russia collusion investigation was “manufactured by McCabe’s boss James Comey based upon a fraudulent and corrupt Dossier,” and calling for acting attorney general Rod Rosenstein to end the investigation—since Sessions recused his power to do so.
McCabe, who has reportedly been keeping a Comey-like personal memo on Trump, had filed his resignation in January, following a Republican campaign to portray him as lacking objectivity.
It is likely that his termination was due less to his lack of transparency, and more to his role in the investigation—as well as the fact that Trump had made no mystery of his dislike for McCabe: His refusal to pledge “loyalty” to Trump, and his wife’s career as a Democrat, both earned Trump’s animosity.