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Analysis: Does McCabe Memo Reveal the Truth Behind Comey’s Firing?

The art of survival in the Trump administration.

Ginny Dang

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Deputy Attorney General, Rod Rosenstein

On Wednesday night, The New York Times first reported that the former Deputy FBI Director, Andrew G. McCabe, authored a confidential memo from last spring which claimed that President Trump had asked the Deputy Attorney General, Rod Rosenstein, to refer to the Russia investigation as a reason for the firing of FBI Director James Comey.

Comey initially took charge of the investigation into possible Russian interference in the 2016 election. The abrupt dismissal of Comey is still at the forefront of the special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into whether President Trump tried to hide campaign ties to Russia.

McCabe has shared his memo — the conversation with Rosenstein — with Mueller, who has been overseeing the investigation since last year, following Attorney General Jeff Session’s recusal.

Rosenstein, however, publicly referred to Comey’s disputed management of the FBI’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server as the sole reason for dismissal.

On the other hand, in a meeting at Justice Department, Rosenstein revealed a new puzzle: “He said the president had originally asked him to reference Russia in his memo. Mr. Rosenstein did not elaborate on what Mr. Trump had wanted him to say.”

To McCabe, this is seemingly a clue that Comey’s firing was related to the F.B.I’s investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia, and Rosenstein possibly played a key role to cover this ulterior motive by diverting attention toward the Clinton investigation.

McCabe, who also authored many other memos about his controversial encounters with Trump, was fired earlier this year by Sessions.

According to Mr. McCabe’s other memos and those familiar with the president’s legal strategy, Rosenstein’s actions are not consistent and seem to have a conflicting role in this situation. At the moment, it’s unclear where Rosenstein fits in the overall puzzle.

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Ginny is a junior Psychology major at Trinity College. She aspires to cultivate the spirit of a journalist and an essayist in her quest to become a writer.

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