FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe made his most significant public relations effort since his firing last week, declaring his innocence of all misconduct in a Friday op-ed in the Washington Post.
“I have been accused of ‘lack of candor,'” McCabe writes, neglecting to mention the source of the accusation, DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s office, and the follow-on recommendation of the FBI Office of Professional Responsibility that he be fired, continuing:
That is not true. I did not knowingly mislead or lie to investigators. When asked about contacts with a reporter that were fully within my power to authorize as deputy director, and amid the chaos that surrounded me, I answered questions as completely and accurately as I could. And when I realized that some of my answers were not fully accurate or may have been misunderstood, I took the initiative to correct them. At worst, I was not clear in my responses, and because of what was going on around me may well have been confused and distracted — and for that I take full responsibility. But that is not a lack of candor.
Much of the piece is devoted to unqualified praise of the FBI and the intelligence agencies. “They continued to protect the American people and uphold the Constitution despite the political winds — and the unprecedented attacks on us by the president and other partisans — that buffeted us,” McCabe writes.
The unelected intelligence and law enforcement agencies resisting the interests of the political branches is the essence of the “Deep State” paradigm.
McCabe also implies this corps of powerful civil servants is under attack. “We cannot afford for young people to be dissuaded from lives of public service by the divisive politics and partisan attacks that now so characterize our national discourse and that, I believe, played a major role in the end of my FBI career,” he explains. “To those men and women, I say: Fear not. Set the headlines aside and give in to what draws you to this work. The country needs you.”
McCabe had attracted the ire of some FBI observers since he stepped into the Bureau’s top spot after the firing of his boss and ally James Comey last May. His links to Clinton loyalists and revelations that his office had served as the venue for disgraced FBI employees Peter Strzok and Lisa Page’s hatching of an “insurance plan” against the American people’s election of President Donald Trump may have brought him to loggerheads with the administration.
While McCabe was interviewed by the House Oversight Committee about these allegations of involvement in political bias, he was officially fired for his “lack of candor” with the DOJ Inspector General’s Office regarding an inquiry into leaks to the media. Some reports indicate this may have involved approving Lisa Page’s leaks to the Wall Street Journal revealing that “a senior Obama Justice Department official” had called McCabe “very pissed off” that he was continuing his investigation into the Hillary Clinton emails found on former convicted sex offender Anthony Weiner’s laptop.
After Attorney General Jeff Sessions made the final call to fire McCabe less than two days before he was due to collect his pension, McCabe has been public and vocal in his denials of wrongdoing and insistence on political motives for his dismissal. For example, he issued a lengthy statement within hours of the breaking news of his departure.