JONATHAN TURLEY: The curious case of Andrew McCabe’s legal defense fund.
The Justice Department recently indicted four “fraudsters” in New York who raised more than $125,000 through a bogus “wounded warrior” charity to benefit themselves rather than to help veterans. It is a recurring problem for people who watch those constant commercials showing trembling dogs in wire cages or heartbreaking kids with cleft lips. Most charities fund legitimate, desperately needed programs but often are harmed by an unscrupulous few.
One recent campaign has attracted huge donations based on dubious claims – and it comes from within the Justice Department itself. The cause is Andrew McCabe, and both the timing and the pitch are strikingly premature. Former FBI Deputy Director McCabe’s GoFundMe page for a “legal defense fund” appeared after he was fired by Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Originally asking for only $150,000, the campaign continued to adjust its goal upward and, in a matter of a few days, surpassed half a million dollars. That is equivalent to more than a decade of McCabe’s expected pension. . . .
It was curious to many that McCabe would so quickly embrace a GoFundMe site before he was “referred” for criminal investigation, let alone charged with any crime. (The inspector general could refer his case for possible criminal charges but, historically, Justice Department officials have avoided such referrals.) However, McCabe clearly did not want to wait for the release of the inspector general report on his conduct before soliciting donations.
In fact, a member of Congress has indicated that McCabe was accused of lying not once but four times about leaking information to the media on the Clinton investigation: lying to FBI Director James Comey, lying to the office of professional responsibility, and lying twice under oath to the inspector general. That is hardly the stuff for a late-night pitch for just a $19.95 monthly donation to support a self-wounded FBI man.
What also is striking is that McCabe has used the same defense as Michael Flynn, who took a plea for a single false statement to investigators. Flynn, however, was given the choice between a plea and prison. There was no pension involved.
The Deep State takes care of its own. And I’d like to see who’s donated to that GoFundMe.