Former Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Director James Comey may not be the only agent at the bureau who'll be called to testify in the investigation into whether President Donald Trump's actions qualify as an obstruction of justice. According to an exclusive report published Thursday by Vox, acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe reportedly told high-ranking FBI officials they may be called to testify against the president. According to the report, McCabe also believes himself to be a potential witness.
Vox's Murray Waas claims "two senior federal law enforcement officials" told him that McCabe had told "several of the highest-ranking managers of the bureau" that they "should consider themselves possible witnesses" in any investigation into whether the president attempted to obstruct the FBI's Russia probe by firing Comey.
"You are going to have the [former] FBI director testify, and then the acting director, the chief of staff to the FBI director, the FBI's general counsel, and then others, one right after another," Vox reported an unnamed "senior law enforcement official" said. "This has never been the word of Trump against what [Comey] has had to say. This is more like the Federal Bureau of Investigation versus Donald Trump."
"This is more like the Federal Bureau of Investigation versus Donald Trump.” https://t.co/Wcn23RHgxq— Ezra Klein (@ezraklein) August 3, 2017
Special counsel Robert Mueller was appointed in May to oversee the FBI's investigation into whether there were any ties between the Trump campaign and Russia's meddling into the 2016 presidential election. That investigation now also includes a probe into whether Trump, in leaning on and eventually firing Comey, engaged in an obstruction of justice. According to an earlier report from the Washington Post, senior members of the U.S. intelligence community, including the heads of national intelligence and the National Security Agency (NSA), have already been questioned as part of the investigation.
According to Vox, Comey is believed to have discussed his conversations with President Trump with at least six high-ranking FBI officials. In one instance, FBI Chief of Staff Jim Rybicki was reportedly in the room while Comey spoke to the president on the phone.
Recently, Trump lashed out at McCabe, calling him "a Comey friend who was in charge of Clinton investigation" in a series of tweets published last week. Trump accused McCabe of taking $700,000 from Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton for his wife's Virginia State Senate campaign in 2015. "Why didn't A.G. Sessions replace Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe," Trump tweeted July 26.
Although, as a democratic candidate, McCabe's wife did receive money from Virginia's Democratic Party, there is no evidence she received money from Clinton, the Los Angeles Times reported. Moreover, McCabe was not employed at FBI headquarters at the time of his wife's unsuccessful state senate campaign and therefore not involved in the investigation into Clinton's use of a private email server.
McCabe's tenure as acting director of the FBI ended Thursday when Christopher Wray, Trump's pick to head the agency, was sworn in. McCabe had been serving as the bureau's acting director since the president abruptly fired Comey on May 9 and is expected to return to his earlier role as deputy director.