Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Unhelpful Tweets Trump's Mccabe Jabs Don't Serve His Cause

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Unhelpful Tweets Trump's Mccabe Jabs Don't Serve His Cause

Article excerpt

Donald Trump has a gift for self-sabotage. His candor in an interview last year with NBC, after firing FBI director James Comey, is what got him the special counsel that haunts his presidency. His instructions to Donald Trump Jr. to lie about his meeting with a Russian lawyer during the election have placed his son and other senior White House staff in legal jeopardy.

The latest example of Mr. Trump getting in the way of his own good fortune is a tweet about former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe. On Friday night at 11:08 p.m., the president gloated, "Andrew McCabe FIRED, a great day for the hard working men and women of the FBI." So the firing certainly looks political, right?

Except it didn't look that way until the tweet went out. When he fired Mr. McCabe earlier that day, Attorney General Jeff Sessions was following the recommendations of senior career Justice Department lawyers after a report from the department's inspector general, who was appointed by Barack Obama.

At issue is an allegation that Mr. McCabe lacked candor when he was asked about unauthorized disclosures during the 2016 election regarding pressure to drop elements of an investigation into Hillary Clinton.

Mr. McCabe is not going down without a fight. Friday night in a statement to the press, he said, "I am being singled out and treated this way because of the role I played, the actions I took and the events I witnessed in the aftermath of the firing of James Comey." That's an extraordinary charge. Mr. McCabe had earlier testified before the House Intelligence Committee that he would support Mr. Comey's account of how Mr. Trump urged Mr. Comey to refrain from going after former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

This convoluted backstory is one reason that the specific justification for terminating Mr. …

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