President Donald Trump’s senior advisers discussed using the US Constitution’s 25th Amendment to remove him from office, former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe has shockingly revealed.
Mr McCabe confirmed for the first time publicly that Justice Department officials considered bringing the cabinet together in the aftermath of former FBI Director James Comey’s dismissal to kick Mr Trump out of the White House.
Speaking about his interview with Mr McCabe to CBS on Friday morning (Australian time), journalist Scott Pelley said the ex-FBI director informed him that top Trump administration officials were tossing up “what to do” with the President.
Discussions “between the highest levels of American law enforcement” occurred during the eight days between Mr Comey’s firing and the appointment of special counsel Robert Mueller, Mr Pelley said.
Mr McCabe who spoke to 60 minutes ahead of the release of his memoir next week, said he was worried that investigations into Mr Trump’s ties to Russia and possible obstruction of justice would be shut down after Mr Comey was let go.
He was greatly alarmed by the possibility that the president “might have won the White House with the aid of the government of Russia” so he assembled his investigators to discuss how to keep the investigations moving forward in the event he was fired or reassigned.
“I was very concerned that I was able to put the Russia case on absolutely solid ground, in an indelible fashion,” McCabe said.
“That were I removed quickly, or reassigned or fired, that the case could not be closed or vanish in the night without a trace.”
Mr McCabe was fired from the FBI last year after the Justice Department inspector general concluded that he had lied during an internal investigation into a news media disclosure.
The allegations, which Mr McCabe has denied, have been referred for investigation to the US Attorney’s office in Washington.
Mr McCabe blasted his firing as part of the Trump administration’s “war on the FBI” and special counsel Robert Mueller’s ongoing investigation
Of his actions after Comey’s firing, Mr McCabe added: “I wanted to make sure that our case was on solid ground and if somebody came in behind me and closed it and tried to walk away from it, they would not be able to do that without creating a record of why they made that decision.”
Mr Trump responded on Twitter on Thursday to news reports of the interview, saying, “Disgraced FBI Acting Director Andrew McCabe pretends to be a ‘poor little Angel’ when in fact he was a big part of the Crooked Hillary Scandal & the Russia Hoax – a puppet for Leakin’ James Comey. I.G. report on McCabe was devastating.”
Disgraced FBI Acting Director Andrew McCabe pretends to be a “poor little Angel” when in fact he was a big part of the Crooked Hillary Scandal & the Russia Hoax – a puppet for Leakin’ James Comey. I.G. report on McCabe was devastating. Part of “insurance policy” in case I won….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 14, 2019
The Justice Department also issued a statement saying that “based on (McCabe’s) personal dealings with the president, there is no basis to invoke the 25th Amendment”.
The interview is to air on Sunday. CBS released an excerpt of the interview on Thursday.
Mr McCabe’s book titled The Threat: How the FBI Protects America in the Age of Terror and Trump, about his time in the FBI, is out next week.