Fired FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe launched an investigation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions after Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Al Franken (D-MN) asked him to, ABC News reported Wednesday.
The investigation concerned Sessions’ failure to mention certain brief 2016 meetings with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak in his confirmation testimony and materials. Congressional Democrats, Leahy and Franken most prominent among them, repeatedly and unsuccessfully tried to turn the inconsistency into a political scandal. According to ABC News’s anonymous sources, they also sent the FBI a letter requesting they investigate Sessions to determine “whether any laws were broken in the course of those contacts or in any subsequent discussion of whether they occurred.”
McCabe willingly took up the request and launched a weeks-long criminal investigation that apparently came to nothing for he handed off responsibility to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s office. Despite interviewing Sessions in January, there is no indication Mueller considered anything related to McCabe’s Democrat-instigated investigation worth pursuing. Chuck Cooper, a leading conservative attorney, told ABC News that, “The Special Counsel’s office has informed me that after interviewing the attorney general and conducting additional investigation, the attorney general is not under investigation for false statements or perjury in his confirmation hearing testimony and related written submissions to Congress.”
ABC presented their sources’ revealing a nearly year-old fruitless investigation as a major development. The timing and juxtaposition of Sessions’ alleged dishonesty in his confirmation and his firing of McCabe, on the recommendation of the FBI’s Office of Professional Responsibility, strongly suggests ABC’s sources are responding to the firing, trying to paint it as hypocritical.
McCabe was found to have acted with a “lack of candor” with investigators from the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General, a charge that would seem to mirror those of which the Democrats accused Sessions. McCabe denies the charge and issued a statement in which he claims he is the victim of a political campaign led by President Trump, “to remove me from my position, destroy my reputation, and possibly strip me of a pension that I worked 21 years to earn.”