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McCabe accuses Rosenstein of being a 'willing accessory' to 'the president and his men'

He claims Rosenstein is trying to 'rewrite...history'

Published: June 3, 2020 1:19pm

Updated: June 3, 2020 3:05pm

Former F.B.I. Deputy Director Andrew McCabe sharply criticized former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein on Wednesday, calling "completely false" Rosenstein's assertions that McCabe at one point temporarily withheld information from him pursuant to the Trump-Russia investigation.

Rosenstein testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday regarding his handling of certain elements of the F.B.I.'s Crossfire Hurricane investigation. At one point he said that McCabe "was not fully candid" with him during the course of that investigation, including that McCabe had failed to immediately inform Rosenstein of bureau proceedings related to Crossfire Hurricane after Rosenstein came on the job. 

In a statement apparently authored shortly after Rosenstein made that assertion, McCabe said that Rosenstein's "claims to have been misled by me or anyone from the F.B.I." were "completely false."

"I briefed Mr. Rosenstein on Jim Comey's memos describing his interactions with the president days after Mr. Rosenstein wrote the memo firing Jim Comey," McCabe said, in a statement read by committee Chairman Lindsey Graham. 

Rosenstein's remarks "loo[k] to be another sad attempt by the president and his men to rewrite the history of their actions in 2017," McCabe said. "They have found in Mr. Rosenstein, then and now, a willing accessory in that effort."

Rosenstein in the closing moments of the hearing defended his claims. 

"I did not say that Mr. McCabe misled me," he said. "Those were not my words. I think he is responding to somebody's question." 

"What I said was, he did not reveal the Comey memos to me for a week. And that is true. He revealed them to me only a couple of hours before they showed up in the New York Times, and he did not reveal to me that he was having internal deliberations with his team about whether to target high-profile people for investigation."

Rosenstein at the hearing acknowledged that by August of 2017 there was no evidence to suggest the Trump campaign had colluded with Russia, though investigations into those allegations would continue for another eighteen months.

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