McCabe: Trump 'may have' committed a crime in blocking Russia probe

Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabeAndrew George McCabeTrump accuses Hillary Clinton of 'destroying the lives' of his campaign staffers The Mueller report concludes it was not needed Ten post-Mueller questions that could turn the tables on Russia collusion investigators MORE is suggesting that a “crime may have been committed” by President TrumpDonald John TrumpNASA exec leading moon mission quits weeks after appointment The Hill's Morning Report — After contentious week, Trump heads for Japan Frustration boils over with Senate's 'legislative graveyard' MORE due to his attempts to stop a Russia probe.

In a "60 Minutes" interview that aired Sunday, McCabe said the potential crime stemmed from Trump’s decision to fire former FBI Director James ComeyJames Brien ComeyTrump orders intel agencies to cooperate with Barr probe into 'spying' on 2016 campaign Attorney General Barr puts former intel bosses on notice Christopher Steele's nugget of fool's gold was easily disproven — but FBI didn't blink an eye MORE in 2017 and public attempts to try and undermine an investigation into his campaign’s ties to Russia.

“And the idea is, if the president committed obstruction of justice, fired the director of the FBI to negatively impact or to shut down our investigation of Russia’s malign activity and possibly in support of his campaign, as a counterintelligence investigator you have to ask yourself, “Why would a president of the United States do that?” McCabe said in the interview.

The former FBI official, who was fired by the Trump administration on the eve of his retirement, also said the FBI had a legitimate reason to open a counterintelligence investigation into Trump’s ties to Russia. He added that current Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod RosensteinJake Tapper fact-checks poster Trump admin created describing Mueller investigation Jeffrey Rosen officially sworn in as deputy attorney general Democrats talk subpoena for Mueller MORE was on board with the investigations, telling interviewers: “Absolutely.”

“So, all those same sorts of facts cause us to wonder is there an inappropriate relationship, a connection between this president and our most fearsome enemy, the government of Russia?” McCabe said.

McCabe pointed to a series of comments from Trump, including tweets, that suggested Russia was at the heart of his decision to fire Comey. He said those comments, as well as Trump’s request that the FBI end an investigation into Michael Flynn, his first national adviser, worried the agency that the president was trying to obstruct the Russia probe.

“Put together, these circumstances were articulable facts that indicated that a crime may have been committed,” McCabe told "60 Minutes." “The president may have been engaged in obstruction of justice in the firing of Jim Comey.”

McCabe’s interview comes as the former FBI official released his book last week, a controversial tale of his time at the agency and overseeing investigations into Trump.

Trump has pushed back at many of McCabe’s claims made in the book and subsequent interviews.

Trump tweeted about McCabe early Monday: "Wow so many lies by now disgraced acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe. He was fired for lying, and now his story gets even more deranged.”