The FBI’s second in command, Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, has been implicated as possibly being part of the circle that discussed how to prevent Donald Trump from beating Hillary Clinton in the Presidential election. FBI agent Peter Strzok and attorney Lisa Page were found to have exchanged strongly-worded anti-Trump texts while having an affair as they worked together on Robert Mueller’s Russia probe. Strzok and Page at one point discussed a possible “path” that was given as an idea to someone named “Andy” to avoid a Trump presidency. Republicans want to know if “Andy” is Andrew McCabe.
After McCabe testified behind closed doors to the House Intelligence Committee for almost eight hours, some Republicans speculated that he would be fired sometime soon. “I’ll be a little bit surprised if [Mr. McCabe’s] still an employee of the FBI this time next week,” Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) told Fox News.
Senate Judiciary chair Chuck Grassley demanded McCabe’s dismissal right before the hearing. Grassley said, “He oughta be replaced. And I’ve said that before and I’ve said it to people who can do it.” The Senator questioned whether McCabe has a conflict of interest and is biased against Trump.
The “path” text discussion is not the only source of skepticism of his motives. Republicans are also alleging McCabe’s conflict of interest is obvious because of his wife’s campaign for the Virginia Senate. Mrs. McCabe’s campaign received donations from Hillary Clinton associates in 2015, yet McCabe did not recuse himself from the Hillary Clinton email investigation.
McCabe also engaged in undisclosed meetings with Fusion GPS, the company that compiled the anti-Trump Steele dossier. Fox News reports that lawmakers may have questioned McCabe about demoted DOJ official Bruce Ohr and his wife Nellie Ohr, who are alleged to be connected to the dossier. Mr. Ohr allegedly met with the British spy who authored the dossier, while his wife worked for the company.
Fox News later reported that McCabe claimed he couldn’t recall when he learned that the dossier had been funded by the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee. Interestingly, though, his signature is on documents that would explain the “dossier’s financing and provenance.” This and other conflicts with the prior testimony of previous witnesses led the Committee “to decide to issue fresh subpoenas” to other DOJ and FBI employees.