The Department of Justice announces it won't pursue charges against former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe, who Trump has repeatedly attacked
- The Department of Justice on Friday announced it won't pursue criminal charges against former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe over whether he lied to investigators about a press leak.
- McCabe was fired by former Attorney General Jeff Sessions after President Donald Trump led a campaign to discredit him over allegations that his work was tainted by political bias against Trump.
- Trump repeatedly attacked McCabe and his wife, Jill McCabe, over her 2015 bid for a state senate seat in Virginia.
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The Department of Justice on Friday announced it won't pursue criminal charges against former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe, who President Donald Trump has repeatedly attacked, over whether he lied to investigators about a press leak.
"We said at the outset of the criminal investigation, almost two years ago, that if the facts and the law determined the result, no charges would be brought," prosecutors said. "We are pleased that Andrew McCabe and his family can go on with their lives without this cloud hanging over them."
Trump repeatedly attacked McCabe and his wife, Jill McCabe, over her 2015 bid for a state senate seat in Virginia. Trump claimed that McCabe was biased against him because his wife is a Democrat and took hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations from the Virginia Democratic Party and groups associated with the Clintons. Jill McCabe lost her race before her husband became involved in the FBI's investigation into Hillary Clinton's private email server.
Justice Department inspector general, Michael Horowitz, accused McCabe of not telling the truth about leaks in a 2016 Wall Street Journal story, which was damaging to Clinton. DOJ prosecutors than initiated an investigation.
Trump publicly pushed to oust McCabe, who worked at the FBI for 21 years, before he could retire with a pension in 2018.
"F.B.I. Deputy Director Andrew McCabe is racing the clock to retire with full benefits," Trump tweeted in December 2017. "90 days to go?!!!"
Trump's then-attorney general, Jeff Sessions, acceded his request and fired McCabe in March 2018, hours before he would've been eligible to retire with benefits, citing McCabe's alleged "lack of candor" under oath.
McCabe decried his firing and accused the president of attempting to undermine former special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into his campaign's ties to Russia and his alleged efforts to obstruct the investigation.
Trump has repeatedly demanded that the Justice Department initiate investigations into his political opponents, including former vice president Joe Biden and his son Hunter and former FBI director James Comey.
Attorney General William Barr told ABC News in an interview released Thursday that he wouldn't follow an order from Trump to investigate a political opponent.
"If he were to say go investigate somebody, and you sense it's because they're a political opponent, then an attorney general shouldn't carry that out, wouldn't carry that out," Barr said.
Earlier this week, four career prosecutors withdrew from the case against Trump's longtime adviser and ally Roger Stone after the Justice Department decided to pursue a more lenient sentence for Stone. The DOJ's move came shortly after Trump publicly criticized the lengthier sentence prosecutors wanted to pursue.
Trump publicly called prosecutors' nine-year sentence recommendation for Stone "disgraceful."
"This is a horrible and very unfair situation," Trump tweeted. "The real crimes were on the other side, as nothing happens to them. Cannot allow this miscarriage of justice!"
BREAKING: DOJ has *dropped* pursuit of criminal charges against MCCABE pic.twitter.com/iaGXgwyoGp- Kyle Cheney (@kyledcheney) February 14, 2020
Andrew McCabe FIRED, a great day for the hard working men and women of the FBI - A great day for Democracy. Sanctimonious James Comey was his boss and made McCabe look like a choirboy. He knew all about the lies and corruption going on at the highest levels of the FBI!- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 17, 2018