Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham is demanding answers from the Justice Department about former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe’s explosive allegation that top officials there discussed invoking the 25th Amendment to remove President Donald Trump from office.
In a letter to Attorney General William Barr on Friday, Graham said that his panel intended to investigate the allegations and gave Barr a two-week deadline to turn over any documents relating to conversations between McCabe and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein about the 25th Amendment or about covertly recording Trump.
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Last month during a media blitz to promote his new book, McCabe said that following the abrupt firing of FBI Director James Comey, Rosenstein had offered to wear a wire into the White House and had additionally thrown out the idea of whether Trump could be removed from office using the 25th Amendment.
McCabe was fired from the FBI last year a day before he was set to retire after DOJ’s internal watchdog alleged he had inappropriately allowed sensitive information to be shared with a reporter and lied to investigators.
In a “60 Minutes” interview McCabe described Rosenstein’s suggestions, which he has repeatedly and adamantly denied, in the context of the frenzied days after Trump abruptly fired Comey but insisted that while neither proposal went anywhere, Rosenstein was “absolutely serious” about his wiretap suggestion.
The New York Times had previously reported on the incident, resulting in Rosenstein preparing to step down from his post over the allegations.
McCabe’s disclosure last month that Rosenstein reportedly mulled which Trump Cabinet members would vote to remove the president reignited the issue among conservatives and Trump himself, who seized on the allegations as proof of a “deep state” looking to undermine Trump.
“The committee is deeply concerned with these discussions and whether they essentially indicate that two of the highest ranking law enforcement officials in the United States were discussing what amounts to a coup against the President,” Graham wrote in his letter Friday.
Graham asked Barr to turn over any memos from McCabe relating to his allegations, including any from meetings between McCabe and Rosenstein during the time before special counsel Robert Mueller’s appointment, any relating to opening an obstruction of justice investigation into the president, any DOJ opinions relating to the 25th Amendment, and the documents used to form the basis for McCabe’s dismissal last year.