US attorney recommends moving forward with charges against McCabe after DOJ rejects his appeal

US attorney recommends moving forward with charges against McCabe after DOJ rejects his appeal
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A U.S. attorney has recommended moving forward with charges against former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabeAndrew George McCabeJudge will not dismiss McCabe's case against DOJ Graham: Comey to testify about FBI's Russia probe, Mueller declined invitation Barr criticizes DOJ in speech declaring all agency power 'is invested in the attorney general' MORE, according to a source close to his legal team.

The move comes after the Department of Justice (DOJ) rejected McCabe's appeal of a decision made by Jessie Liu, the U.S. attorney for Washington D.C. He had appealed in the hopes of avoiding criminal charges after an internal DOJ watchdog concluded that he "lacked candor" with federal investigators. 

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“The Department rejected your appeal of the United States Attorney’s Office’s decision in this matter. Any further inquiries should be directed to the United States Attorney’s Office," reads an email sent from the DOJ to the legal team, according to the source.

Fox News first reported the charges recommendation.

McCabe was fired in March by then-Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsRoy Moore sues Alabama over COVID-19 restrictions GOP set to release controversial Biden report Trump's policies on refugees are as simple as ABCs MORE, after DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz provided a recommendation to an internal FBI office that McCabe was not forthcoming during interviews with federal investigators and that he "lacked candor — including under oath — on multiple occasions."

In particular, Sessions said at the time that the FBI's Office of Professional Responsibility and Office of Inspector General had found McCabe made an unauthorized disclosure to the news media in 2016 by allowing FBI officials to speak with reporters about an investigation into the Clinton Foundation.

McCabe's ouster last year came just days before the No. 2 official was scheduled to retire, stripping him of the pension he expected to receive after more than 20 years at the bureau.

Last month, McCabe sought to challenge the basis of his firing, alleging in a lawsuit against the FBI and DOJ that his termination from the bureau was a “politically motivated” move that stemmed from President TrumpDonald John TrumpNew Biden campaign ad jabs at Trump's reported 0 income tax payments Ocasio-Cortez: Trump contributed less in taxes 'than waitresses and undocumented immigrants' Third judge orders Postal Service to halt delivery cuts MORE's attacks against him and other DOJ officials.

In the court documents, McCabe alleges Trump was behind his firing, claiming that he forced the hands of other officials at the DOJ including Sessions, Horowitz and Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod RosensteinDOJ kept investigators from completing probe of Trump ties to Russia: report Five takeaways from final Senate Intel Russia report FBI officials hid copies of Russia probe documents fearing Trump interference: book MORE to remove him. And as a result, McCabe says this caused harm to his “reputation, professional standing, and dramatically reduced his retirement benefits” after “two decades of unblemished and non-partisan public service.”

House Republicans and other White House allies have long alleged misconduct among the top brass of the FBI and urged disciplinary action against officials such as McCabe, former counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok and former FBI Director James ComeyJames Brien ComeySteele Dossier sub-source was subject of FBI counterintelligence probe Judge will not dismiss McCabe's case against DOJ Democrats fear Russia interference could spoil bid to retake Senate MORE.

And GOP attacks against him were refueled last month after CNN announced that they had hired him as a commentator.

Republicans have recently argued that McCabe should be punished for lying to investigators, noting that other Trump officials such as George PapadopoulosGeorge Demetrios PapadopoulosTale of two FBI cases: Clinton got warned, Trump got investigated Trump says he would consider pardons for those implicated in Mueller investigation New FBI document confirms the Trump campaign was investigated without justification MORE and Michael Flynn were charged for lying to investigators on special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerCNN's Toobin warns McCabe is in 'perilous condition' with emboldened Trump CNN anchor rips Trump over Stone while evoking Clinton-Lynch tarmac meeting The Hill's 12:30 Report: New Hampshire fallout MORE’s team.

“I don’t know how you can’t indict him when he is engaged in the same conduct that other people have recently been charged for at the Department of Justice, particularly when your own watchdog says that those lies were done intentionally and knowingly and done repeatedly,” Rep. John RatcliffeJohn Lee RatcliffeHillicon Valley: Subpoenas for Facebook, Google and Twitter on the cards | Wray rebuffs mail-in voting conspiracies | Reps. raise mass surveillance concerns Bipartisan representatives demand answers on expired surveillance programs Democrats call for declassifying election threats after briefing by Trump officials MORE (R-Texas), a House Judiciary Committee member, said during a Sunday interview on Fox News's "Sunday Morning Futures."

“I think the Department of Justice is going to have to indict Andy McCabe simply because to do otherwise would be to admit that there are separate standards for people doing the same thing for the same conduct,” he said.