McCabe: "I think it's possible" Trump is a Russian asset

"Do you still believe that the president could be a Russian asset?" asked CNN's Anderson Cooper during an interview with McCabe on "Anderson Cooper 360".

"I think it's possible, I think it's the reason we started our investigation, and I'm really looking forward to seeing where (Special Advisor Robert) Mueller will conclude that," he said. McCabe.

This is another very enlightening comment from McCabe, who comes a few days after he exposed on Sunday at CBS the reasons why senior US officials decided to open a counterintelligence investigation and an investigation of obstruction of justice over the president.

McCabe promotes his new book, "The Threat", which paints a gripping portrait of his time at Trump's office, detailing his version of interactions with the highest officials of the White House and the Department of Justice . The book was published on Tuesday and became an instant bestseller.

White House advisor Kellyanne Conway responded to McCabe's comments on CNN's "Cuomo Prime Time," saying McCabe's comment was "hardly worthy of an answer".

"He is a liar and a leaker," said Conway.

The former acting director of the FBI has been frowning as a result of this interview in the "60-minute" CBS broadcast, which had stated that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein had raised the idea to surreptitiously record interactions with the President and had raised the point of invoking the 25th Amendment to oust Trump from office. Rosenstein has already stated that this comment was misinterpreted.

When asked if he thought someone should spin to record conversations with the president, McCabe replied, "Absolutely not." He added that it was "an incredibly invasive thing and likely to set a precedent," and added that he did not think it was necessary. He added that it would only be necessary to collect evidence of intent and that "we did not need to do it in this case, we knew what the President wanted".

McCabe took the lead of the FBI when Trump sacked James Comey in May 2017. During his tenure as head of the department, McCabe was sacked. He was finally fired in 2018, just days before the announced date of his retirement. Federal prosecutors in Washington, DC, have opened a criminal investigation for misleading investigators in their investigation into the FBI's handling of the Clinton Foundation's investigation.

McCabe said that the inspector general's report that had served to justify his dismissal was the result of undue influence of command, knowing that it was clear that the president wanted him to leave before the expected date of retirement.

CNN previously reported that McCabe had opened an investigation into the obstruction of justice in Trump before the start of Mueller's investigation. The FBI had already considered this idea, but this idea began after the dismissal of former FBI director James Comey in May 2017. Sources have already told CNN that the decision to open the 39; investigation included the conversation of the president with Comey in the oval office asking him to stop the investigation. his former National Security Advisor, Michael Flynn.

McCabe made harsh remarks to the president during his interview with Cooper, accusing Trump of undermining the main law enforcement agencies in the country for political purposes. .

"This president undermines the role of law enforcement, our intelligence infrastructure and has a negative impact on the men and women of the FBI and on the intelligence agencies (and their ability) to protect that country in the first place. daily, "says McCabe.

He added that there was no doubt in his mind that the president was undermining the "efficiency and strength" of government institutions.

In the interview, McCabe described the events that led to the decision to open a counterintelligence investigation on the president, stating that he did not know if there were any things that have not been made public yet. He said that after the dismissal of Comey by the president and his mention of Russia among the reasons given, the FBI was "obliged to open the file", because there was an "articulable foundation" allowing believe that a "federal crime has been committed".

With respect to why he did not speak earlier, McCabe said he thought it should be thoughtful about how the president was undermining the justice system.

McCabe did not mean if the FBI was investigating the president's family. He told Cooper that it was not something he was comfortable talking about, saying that "could go to ongoing investigations".

McCabe said that he had not continued to receive news of the investigation into Russia after Mueller's appointment.

The former acting director of the FBI subsequently defended Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and declared that "the entire country owes him a debt of gratitude" for Mueller's appointment. "Rod did the right thing by putting the right person in charge of this investigation."

McCabe said that he did not know if Rosenstein should have recused himself from the Russian investigation.

"It was an incredible time, the mere fact that the Deputy Attorney General and the Acting Director of the FBI were trying to find a way to handle a situation in which we thought the US President might be involved in a shackle. justice and justice could do it to hide some sort of inappropriate relationship with the Russians, "said McCabe.

"It was a decisive moment," he added.

As he did in his book, McCabe also formulated harsh criticisms of former Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

McCabe has repeatedly stated to have had the impression that Sessions was not reading the daily briefing of the president, and that that "has a little confirmed when I learned from our own people that tablets used to convey the briefing documents were not open regularly. "

Tammy Kupperman and Katie Bernard of CNN contributed to this report.

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