The Federal Bureau of Investigation has seen better days. The preeminent law enforcement and domestic intelligence agency has been upended by the leadership of former FBI Director James Comey and former Deputy Director Andrew McCabe. Both men were fired. Comey was dismissed by Trump in May of 2017, while McCabe was justifiably axed for lying to investigators over unauthorized media leaks based on recommendation by the Office of Public Responsibility citing the report filed by Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz, an Obama appointee, on his conduct. It was not pretty. He lied under oath three times.
Yet, there are other scars. As Kerry Picket reported for The Daily Caller, there are agents at the Washington Field Office who are sick of the damage Comey and McCabe have inflicted on the bureau. Picket cited Joe DiGenova, a former federal prosecutor and Trump official, who maintains contact with agents at the FBI. He said these agents want to be subpoenaed by Congress in order to have protections from retribution, and so that Congress will pay their legal fees. They’re appalled at how politicized the front office has become, adding if you go against the Clintons, “you’re crushed” (via Daily Caller):
Many agents in the FBI want Congress to subpoena them so they can reveal problems caused by former FBI Director James Comey and former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe, three people in direct contact with active field agents tell TheDC.
“There are agents all over this country who love the bureau and are sickened by [James] Comey’s behavior and [Andrew] McCabe and [Eric] Holder and [Loretta] Lynch and the thugs like [John] Brennan–who despise the fact that the bureau was used as a tool of political intelligence by the Obama administration thugs,” former federal prosecutor Joe DiGenova told The Daily Caller Tuesday. “They are just waiting for a chance to come forward and testify.”
Ahead of the release of the Department of Justice (DOJ) inspector general report on how the FBI handled the Clinton email investigation, TheDC spoke with DiGenova, a former Trump official who maintained contact with rank and file FBI agents and a counter-intelligence consultant who conducted an interview with an active special agent of the FBI’s Washington Field Office (WFO).
DiGenova — who along with his wife, Victoria Toensing, has represented government whistleblowers in the past — agreed, telling TheDC, “It’s an intelligent approach to the situation given the vindictive nature of the bureau under Comey and McCabe. I have no idea how to read Chris Wray, who is not a leader and who has disappeared from the public eye during this entire crisis. You know, he may be cleaning house but if he’s doing so, he’s doing it very quietly.”
He added, “I don’t blame them. I don’t blame the agents one bit. I think that the FBI is in a freefall. James Comey has destroyed the institution he claims to love.
For Comey, at first, you could maybe see that this is a man who had no good options. The FBI would be seen as a political actor no matter what with the email investigation into whether Hillary Clinton had mishandled classified information while serving as secretary of state; she had conducted all official business through a private, unauthorized, and unsecure homebrew server. While not recommending criminal charges, he did torch the Clinton team to negligence with regards to handling sensitive material. He indicted the judgment of Mrs. Clinton. Then, the October surprise: the FBI would be re-opening the email probe to review more emails found on the laptop of Anthony Weiner, husband of top Clinton aide Huma Abedin. Weiner was under investigation for obscene communications with a minor. It was later revealed that the two had shared the device. This was done weeks before Election Day—with many Democrats blaming it for her loss, though polling and pollsters suggest otherwise; they say more or less that it really didn’t tip the balance for Trump. Either way, this looks bad for the bureau, but could have looked worse if we found out this was buried months or years after the 2016 election. Then, after Comey is fired, he suggests he did it because he thought Clinton would win, and that this might legitimize her win. The rule of law based on poll numbers? That’s deplorable, sir.
For McCabe, it seems he did what he did to cover any aura of a conflict of interest. You see in 2015, his wife, Jill, ran for Virginia senate. She lost, but got over $400,000 in contributions from then-Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s PAC; McAuliffe is a top Clinton ally. McCabe is later promoted to deputy director and oversees the Clinton email probe. It would look as if he got a down payment for political protection. The Wall Street Journal was going to reveal this and thus lead to the leak: there was tension between the FBI and DOJ over the Clinton Foundation probe. An internal inquiry is launched by Comey, which would eventually destroy McCabe’s career. It was also revealed that during his wife’s state senate campaign, that McCabe might have violated the Hatch Actby promoting you candidacy on his government email account. Whatever the case, the lying under oath part is more serious, as the DOJ IG referred McCabe for possible criminal charges for it.
Yet, the latest scar the FBI has to deal with is the notion that the front office participated in a spy game with the Trump campaign. Stefan Halper, a longtime CIA operative and professor at Cambridge University, is said to have tried to glean information from George Papadopoulos, Carter Page, and Sam Clovis for the FBI. Yes, the Obama DOJ/FBI was spying on the Trump campaign. There seems to be no legitimate reason for this operation other than it was done for political purposes, pending new details. There were elements that wanted Trump to be destroyed, but it could take years for the whole truth to come out. All of this was done under the Obama administration, which has been able to escape media scrutiny, feeding and reconfirming preconceptions about liberal media bias. Mark this down as example number 345767848 of liberal bias from the news media. None of this could have occurred without then-President Obama knowing. So, what did he know and when did he know it. It goes beyond the FBI, but that’s our start. The Russian collusion probe is looking more like a clown show every day and it has yet to unearth solid, incontrovertible evidence that the Kremlin and Trump camp colluded during the 2016 election. What is fact: the FBI spied on the presidential campaign of an opponent. This should be appalling, but some are now trying to blame Trump for creating a constitutional crisis over it.
We’ll see if anything comes of the subpoenas, things should get interesting if that happens.