This is one of those rare Washington feel-good stories with no visible downsides.
According to multiple reports, James Comey has been called in to the office of a US Attorney for questioning by federal investigators looking into the allegation that former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe lied to federal agents investigating a leak of classified information. The evidence of his lying developed in an investigation by the DOJ IG was sufficient that McCabe was fired rather than being allowed to resign.
Things look grim for Team McCabe. James Comey is the guy who fingered him as lying and lines are being drawn with McCabe outside most of them.
“This attack on my credibility is one part of a larger effort not just to slander me personally, but to taint the FBI, law enforcement, and intelligence professionals more generally,” McCabe said in a statement after he was fired.
“I like [McCabe] very much as a person, but sometimes even good people do things they shouldn’t do,” Comey told “The Lead with Jake Tapper” on CNN in April. “I think it is accountability mechanisms working and they should work because it’s not acceptable in the FBI or the Justice Department for people to lack candor. It’s something we take really seriously.”
Now McCabe is experiencing that wonderful feeling of having your case, like that of Mike Flynn, adjudicated in the press. What makes this better, is that in Comey’s various interviews he’s basically instructed other members of the FBI on what they should say to investigators. As this is boiling down to a McCabe vs. Comey fight, that supporting testimony is going to be critical.
Comey is now in the position of supporting his rationale for the prosecution of Martha Stewart:
In his recent book, “A Higher Loyalty,” Mr. Comey devoted an entire chapter to the case against Ms. Stewart. He wrote that he hesitated to charge her for fear of being attacked for making a “mountain out of a molehill,” but concluded that she had to be prosecuted “to protect the institution of justice, and reinforce a culture of truth-telling.”
All of the outcomes here are good. It is hard to see, in the current political climate, how McCabe doesn’t get indicted. If he isn’t indicted then it is a clear endorsement of the idea that FBI agents have carte blanche to lie while we mere proles go to prison for the same thing. Alternatively, people know that Comey lied about McCabe not having permission to leak (which I suspect is the case) to cover his own tracks and this investigation will encourage witnesses to “flip” (to use the parlance of the Mueller fanbois) on Comey. In which case, Comey gets the orange suit.
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