McCabe: No one in 'Gang of Eight' objected to FBI probe into Trump

Former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabeAndrew George McCabeRosenstein still working at DOJ despite plans to leave in mid-March Graham says he'll probe Rosenstein's 25th Amendment remarks The damning proof of innocence that FBI likely withheld in Russian probe MORE said Tuesday that none of the top eight congressional leaders objected when he briefed them in 2017 on the bureau's decision to open a counterintelligence investigation into President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump mocks wind power: 'When the wind doesn't blow, just turn off the television' Pentagon investigator probing whether acting chief boosted former employer Boeing Trump blasts McCain, bemoans not getting 'thank you' for funeral MORE.

"The purpose of the briefing was to let our congressional leadership know exactly what we’d been doing," McCabe, who was the acting FBI director at the time, said during an interview on NBC's "Today" show.

McCabe acknowledged that he ordered the investigation, but pushed back against suggestions that he'd acted alone in doing so. He said that he consulted with his team, reviewed it with bureau lawyers and discussed it with Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod Jay RosensteinThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump steps up attacks on McCain Rosenstein still working at DOJ despite plans to leave in mid-March Graham says he'll probe Rosenstein's 25th Amendment remarks MORE before moving forward.

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"And I told Congress what we had done," he said.

"No one objected," he added in the interview. "Not on legal grounds, not on constitutional grounds and not based on the facts."

The New York Times first reported last month that the FBI launched an inquiry into whether Trump was working for Russia after the president fired former bureau chief James ComeyJames Brien ComeyTrump says public can see Mueller report Anderson Cooper blasts Trump over McCain attacks: 'He's punching a person who is dead' Clyburn: Trump and family 'greatest threats to democracy' in lifetime MORE. McCabe took over as acting director after Comey's ouster.

The "Gang of Eight" consists of the top two leaders from each party in each chamber of Congress. Representatives around the time of the 2017 meeting would have included Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump blasts McCain, bemoans not getting 'thank you' for funeral GOP senator: Trump's criticism of McCain 'deplorable' McConnell calls McCain a 'rare patriot' and 'American hero' after Trump criticism MORE (R-Ky.), then-Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanHead of top hedge fund association to step down Romney knocks Trump over McCain criticism Paul Ryan joins board of Fox Corporation MORE (R-Wis.), Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerGOP senator: Trump's criticism of McCain 'deplorable' Schumer to introduce bill naming Senate office building after McCain amid Trump uproar Why we need to build gateway now MORE (D-N.Y.) and then-House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiRisk-averse Republicans are failing the republic The Hill's Morning Report - Trump, Dems put manufacturing sector in 2020 spotlight Trump, Saturday Night Live and why autocrats can't take a joke MORE (D-Calif.).

McCabe has been on a media blitz in recent days ahead of the release of his book. The former deputy FBI director was fired last year after an internal report found he lacked candor in interviews with investigators.

The former FBI official made headlines with a "60 Minutes" interview over the weekend in which he said there were conversations among Justice Department officials raising the possibility of removing Trump via the 25th Amendment, and that Rosenstein had offered to wear a wire around the president.

The Justice Department issued a statement in response reiterating Rosenstein's denial of the claim, which the deputy attorney general called "inaccurate and factually incorrect."

McCabe later walked back his remarks, with a spokesperson issuing a statement that he did not "participate in any extended discussions about the use of the 25th Amendment, nor is he aware of any such discussions."

Trump and his allies have seized on McCabe's comments to paint the bureau as biased against the president. Trump tweeted on Monday that McCabe was "fired for lying," and suggested he and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein "look like they were planning a very illegal act."

Rosenstein will reportedly leave his post at the Justice Department in the coming weeks.