‘Treasonous’ – Trump accuses top officials of plotting ‘coup’

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‘Treasonous’ – Trump accuses top officials of plotting ‘coup’


Point made: US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania. Photo: REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Point made: US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania. Photo: REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

US President Donald Trump has accused his own deputy attorney general of breaking the law in a series of early morning tweets railing against current and former law enforcement officials.

“Wow, so many lies by now disgraced acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe,” Mr Trump tweeted yesterday morning.

“He was fired for lying, and now his story gets even more deranged. He and [Deputy Attorney General] Rod Rosenstein, who was hired by Jeff Sessions (another beauty), look like they were planning a very illegal act, and got caught.

“There is a lot of explaining to do to the millions of people who had just elected a president who they really like and who has done a great job for them with the Military, Vets, Economy and so much more. This was the illegal and treasonous ‘insurance policy’ in full action!”

The US president’s outburst comes after former acting FBI chief Andrew McCabe, who was fired last year, said last week Mr Rosenstein offered in May 2017 to secretly record himself in conversation with Mr Trump following the president’s firing of then-FBI director James Comey.

Meanwhile, the Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham has said his panel will investigate former acting FBI Mr McCabe’s assertion that Mr Rosenstein raised the possibility of ousting Mr Trump through the 25th Amendment, calling the statement “beyond stunning”.

Senator Graham was responding to comments made by Mr McCabe in an interview with CBS News’s ’60 Minutes’, broadcast on Sunday night.

“There’s an allegation by the acting FBI director at the time that the deputy attorney general was basically trying to do an administrative coup, take the president down [through] the 25th Amendment process,” Mr Graham said in an appearance on CBS’s ‘Face the Nation’.

“The deputy attorney general denies it. I promise your viewers the following: that we will have a hearing about who’s telling the truth, what actually happened.”

He added he will subpoena Mr McCabe and Mr Rosenstein if necessary.

In the ’60 Minutes’ interview, Mr McCabe said Mr Rosenstein raised the idea of using the 25th Amendment to remove Mr Trump out of concern about the president’s “capacity and about his intent at that point in time”.

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The conversation, he said, occurred in the hectic days after Mr Trump fired James Comey as FBI director.

Mr Rosenstein was “counting votes or possible votes” among cabinet members on whether to oust the president, Mr McCabe told CBS’s Scott Pelley.

The 25th Amendment establishes a process for the cabinet to force the president’s removal if he is unable to perform his duties.

Mr McCabe’s spokeswoman said in a statement on Friday that he did not participate in any “extended discussions” about using the 25th Amendment, nor was he aware of any.

Mr McCabe said Mr Rosenstein also “offered to wear a wire into the White House” in the context of a discussion about why Mr Trump had fired Mr Comey and his fixation on Russia.

“He said, ‘I never get searched when I go into the White House. I could easily wear a recording device. They wouldn’t know it was there,'” Mr McCabe said, describing what Mr Rosenstein allegedly told him. “He was not joking.”

Mr Rosenstein has disputed previous reports describing allegations by Mr McCabe that he had discussed the topic. The Justice Department again pushed back in a statement late last week.

Mr Graham described the issue as one of national concern. Mr McCabe “went on national television and he made an accusation that floors me… We’re going to find out what happened here, and the only way I know to find out is to call the people in under oath and find out, through questioning, who’s telling the truth, because the underlying accusation is beyond stunning,” the senator said.

Mr McCabe said in the ’60 Minutes’ interview that the bureau and Justice Department were thrown into turmoil after Mr Comey’s firing, and he and Mr Rosenstein were concerned about Mr Trump’s motives.

Mr McCabe said Mr Rosenstein, who wrote a memo supporting Mr Comey’s removal, told him Mr Trump had wanted him to mention Russia, though Mr Rosenstein ultimately did not do so.

That decision, coupled with Mr Comey’s firing and the president’s public comments deriding the examination of Russian interference in the 2016 election, helped convince the FBI to open an investigation into Mr Trump personally, said Mr McCabe.

Irish Independent

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