Andrew McCabe Delays Testimony to SJC, Calling In-Person Testimony a “Grave Safety Risk”

Virtually every book about the FBI or the Mueller investigation that has come out in recent years has described that Andrew McCabe is a superb briefer — meaning, in part, he can present complex issues to a hostile audience clearly. That’s why the reason his attorney, Michael Bromwich, gave for delaying testimony that was scheduled makes a lot of sense.

As a letter Bromwich sent to Lindsey Graham laid out, McCabe agreed to a voluntary interview in September, provided a series of conditions were met. One — that McCabe have access to his unclassified calendars and notes — has already been thwarted by DOJ, which refused to turn them over (as Bromwich laid out in a letter to Michael Horowitz last week, after inventing reasons not to share the materials that might make McCabe’s testimony more useful, FBI admitted they wouldn’t turn them over because of McCabe’s lawsuit against the Bureau).

But another of the conditions was that the testimony be in person. Bromwich noted that Republicans spoke over both Sally Yates and Jim Comey when they earlier testified remotely. “[A] witness answering questions remotely via videoconference is at a distinct disadvantage in answering those questions,” Bromwich wrote. “A fair and appropriate hearing of this kind – which is complex and contentious – simply cannot be conducted other than in person.”

But the COVID outbreak among those who attended the Federalist Society super-spreader event last weekend has made such in-person testimony too dangerous.

Mr. McCabe was still prepared to testify voluntarily and in person on October 6 as recently as the latter part of this past week. However, since that time, it has been reported that at least two members of your Committee – Senators Mike Lee and Thom Tillis – have tested positive for Covid-19, and it may well be that other members of the Committee and staff who plan to attend the hearing will test positive between now and then, or may have been exposed to the virus and may be a carrier. Under these circumstances, an in-person hearing carries grave safety risks to Mr. McCabe, me, and senators and staff who would attend.

McCabe is not wrong. There’s abundant reason to distrust Lindsey Graham’s claimed negative test. Mike Lee was haranguing publicly at several public events last week before he was diagnosed. And Chuck Grassley (who has far more mask discipline than his colleagues, but who was unmasked for part of the Comey hearing last week) refuses to be tested.

Still, it’s crazy that SJC has become too dangerous for a regular oversight hearing, but Lindsey still plans to push on with the Supreme Court confirmation process that caused that COVID outbreak.

11 replies
  1. Rugger9 says:

    Lindsey’s pushing on ACB because of self-preservation. Since we know how deeply intertwined the GOP is with the potentially criminal irregularities of the DJT campaign even in 2016, Barrett is absolutely crucial in the plan to keep DJT in office and any further investigations blocked. A Biden win means jail for many of these congresscritters and minions.

    McCabe’s hearing OTOH is only useful for the election smears and can be delayed for a couple of weeks.

  2. madwand says:

    Jaime Harrison who is running against Graham in SC and has a chance of winning, brought his own plexiglass divider and a mask to the debate. Up in the Capital as this WAPO article shows there is little impetus for contact tracing and people at events where Trump and his minions went are not being notified of any risk. So McCabe has a case. Republicans are acting irresponsible and want to assert their priorities are more important then our health. Down in my neck of the woods the state of Georgia has asserted citizens have no right to know about the status of Covid in the schools. My female senator who was at the Rose Garden event is so far negative and may she stay that way, hope she is quarantining but who knows? Republicans tend to think they are bullet proof until the bullet strikes. Greg Guffield over in Fox seems to think Trump is a brave guy and compares his actions of going maskless to a soldier in combat. What does he know? No soldier stands up in the middle of a firefight and says “shoot me” which is what Trump is doing by going maskless.

    Final question of the day posed by Zerlina Maxwell and I think it has a lot of merit, is “If Trump can’t protect himself, how is he going to protect the rest of us.” I think that question has already been answered, he hasn’t.

  3. ollie says:

    So the nasty drop of water, Sen. Tom Cotton, stated Sunday am that he and others are prepared to wheel in those members who are sick w/Covid, into the Senate to cast their vote. im:wtf? I can just see about say 10 by vote time, all lying on a gurney……..w/drips going, by (oh let’s go extreme here, lol) Dr. Conley and all Trumps Medical staff, what, 25? they’re all wheeling them in to vote. Okay. I’m done. I’ve been staying in touch via twitter. Happy Fall !!

      • Ginevra diBenci says:

        Grassley’s refusal is reason enough for a sane person to call foul on any in-person proceeding, whether hearing or vote. He should not be in the same county as Pence or Pelosi, given their status in the line of succession. Kayleigh McEneney just tested positive, more proof (as if it were needed) that the White House and its Barrett promotions have seeded the virus throughout red DC. Where are the damn adults?

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