in Civilization

Trump Has A Twittergasm Over News That FBI Deputy Director Will Retire In March

The Washington Post reports that FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe plans to retire after he becomes fully eligible for a pension in March. McCabe has “got about 90 days, and some of that will be holiday time. He can make it,’’ one source tells the Post.

John Pistole, who served as Robert Mueller’s deputy director for six years, says that McCabe is “in a difficult position” due to “the hyperpartisan political environment.” Congressional Republicans have attacked McCabe as a predicate to shutting down investigations of Donald Trump’s Russian collusion, including Mueller’s office of special counsel.

“It’s disappointing,” Pistole says, “to see how the criticism of the FBI is being used to try to undermine the credibility of the Mueller investigation. I think they’ve figured out they can’t undermine Bob’s integrity, so they’re just going to go after whoever they can dig up any dirt on.’’

Trump tweeted about the story later in the afternoon.

Republicans have focused their criticism on two fronts. During the 2016 presidential campaign, McCabe senior adviser Lisa Page and FBI counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok exchanged text messages expressing distaste for Donald Trump. As a candidate for public office, McCabe’s wife received donations from a Clinton ally’s PAC.

Trump echoed the latter theme in another tweet.

Both have been reassigned, but Republicans are accusing the FBI of bias nevertheless, with McCabe as their primary whipping-boy. This has the added benefit of undermining the integrity of a key corroborating witness to fired FBI Director James Comey’s account of Trump obstructing justice.

Not coincidentally, Trump also tweeted about a second corroborating witness being reassigned.

The news of Mr. McCabe’s pending departure gives us a timeline for constitutional crisis. As Republicans move to squelch committee investigations in Congress and minimize their reach, the process of replacing McCabe will provide another opening for Trump to obstruct or restrict the special counsel investigation.

Trump and his lawyers have consistently voiced an expectation that Mueller’s investigation will wrap up before the end of the year. That is clearly not going to happen, so we should expect Trump to become increasingly agitated in the new year. By March, he will probably be in a mood to court open dictatorship, and a core group of Republicans appears ready to destroy the federal law enforcement bureaucracy to help him get away with it.

Featured image via public domain

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  • Trump is going to fire McCabe on day 89 just to make it hurt, isn’t he?