As the James Comey book tour rolls on, with hundreds of people attending a signing last night in New York City, former alliances at the FBI and DOJ are falling apart.
When FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe announced in January he would retire, after coming under heavy fire for potentially lying under oath and after FBI text messages revealed severe anti-Trump bias during the criminal investigation into Hillary Clinton, Comey publicly defended him.
Special Agent Andrew McCabe stood tall over the last 8 months, when small people were trying to tear down an institution we all depend on. He served with distinction for two decades. I wish Andy well. I also wish continued strength for the rest of the FBI. America needs you.— James Comey (@Comey) January 30, 2018
Times have quickly changed.
Just two days before his scheduled retirement in March, which would have awarded him a full pension, McCabe was fired by Attorney General Jeff Sessions for a lack of candor. Sessions made the decision after a recommendaton from the DOJ Office of the Inspector General and FBI Office of Professional Responsibility.
A OIG report released last week not only showed that McCabe repeatedly lied to FBI and OIG investigators under oath, he also lied to Comey about leaking sensitive information to the press.
"We found that, in a conversation with then-Director Comey shortly after the WSJ article was published, McCabe lacked candor when he told Comey, or made statements that led Comey to believe, that McCabe had not authorized the disclosure and did not know who did," the report states. "This conduct violated FBI Offense Code 2.5 (Lack of Candor – No Oath)."
During an interview with The View earlier this week, Comey revealed he launched the leak investigation that ultimately led to McCabe's firing.
"The McCabe case illustrates what an organization committed to the truth looks like. I ordered that investigation," Comey said. "The inspector general found that he lied, and there are severe consequences in the Justice Department for lying as there should be throughout the government.”
James @Comey wants critics who say he is only seeking book sales to "read the book": "Even if you leave the book still thinking I'm an idiot, you actually realize I'm actually kind of an honest idiot." https://t.co/f8u2wc159S pic.twitter.com/nOAhooVTDv— The View (@TheView) April 18, 2018
Now, McCabe is fighting back and questioning Comey's judgement in taking the OIG report seriously.
“In his comments this week about the McCabe matter, former FBI Director James Comey has relied on the accuracy and the soundness of the Office of the Inspector General’s (OIG) conclusions in their report on Mr. McCabe," McCabe's attorney released in a statement. "In fact, the report fails to adequately address the evidence (including sworn testimony) and documents that prove that Mr. McCabe advised Director Comey repeatedly that he was working with the Wall Street Journal on the stories in question prior to publication. Neither Mr. Comey nor the OIG is infallible, and in this case neither of them has it right.”
Former Attorney General Loretta Lynch is also at odds with Comey. She has issued a number of statements defending her decisions during the 2016 presidential election and the criminal Clinton investigation.
Meanwhile, 11 House Republicans have officially referred Comey, McCabe, Lynch and others for criminal investigation. They are accused of lying under oath and other violations of U.S. code.