The Department of Justice‘s inspector general has sent a criminal referral for fired Federal Bureau of Investigation Deputy Director Andrew McCabe to the U.S. attorney’s office in Washington, D.C., according to the Daily Mail.
Federal prosecutors in Washington will now determine whether McCabe should be charged criminally for lying to federal agents at the DOJ and FBI. That is a huge deal, meaning McCabe is inches away from being in the defendant’s seat.
The explosive report follows a referral yesterday for McCabe, Loretta Lynch, Hillary Clinton and others from congress, and a report from Michael Horowitz’s (Inspector General) office last week revealing that McCabe lied at least four times to DOJ investigators earlier this year about authorizing sensitive material leaks to the media.
According to the IG’s report, McCabe lied once to former FBI Director James Comey, once to FBI officials, and twice to DOJ investigators about authorizing leaks about former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
McCabe provided the information to The Wall Street Journal in October 2016 — just weeks before the presidential election — that downplayed the severity of the FBI’s investigations into Clinton’s private email server and the “pay-for-play” scheme at the Clinton Foundation.
News of the criminal referral quickly scorched across Twitter on Thursday, with Republican North Carolina Rep. Mark Meadows supporting the move. Meadows said illegal behavior should never be tolerated at the DOJ or FBI, and he’s exactly right.
Andrew McCabe lied to his FBI superiors not once. Not twice. Not three times. He lied four times–multiple times under oath.
The criminal referral from the IG is the right decision. It's about time we have some accountability for this type of conduct at the Justice Department.
— Mark Meadows (@RepMarkMeadows) April 19, 2018
The criminal referral is also major news because it may set precedent for the DOJ to charge other former officials for breaking the law.
It may also spell trouble for Comey, who lied under oath in June 2017 when he testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee. Comey told lawmakers that he never personally leaked or authorized anyone at the FBI to leak information about the Clinton investigation.
Comey answered “never” and “no” to both of the questions from lawmakers.
On Wednesday, Michael Bromwich, the attorney representing McCabe, released a statement stating that Comey is lying about that claim. McCabe asserts that Comey knew he was leaking information to the media about the Clinton investigation and authorized it.
If that’s true, it would mean Comey lied under oath before Congress — which is a felony.
Will a criminal referral be sent to prosecutors for Comey? If McCabe is on the verge of being charged for lying, then Comey should be subjected to the exact same treatment.
What about Hillary Clinton? Loretta Lynch? Susan Rice? Many officials from former Presdident Barack Obama’s administration lied, and they should be held accountable for their actions just like McCabe.