WASHINGTON – A former FBI official who worked closely with Andrew McCabe is criticizing the former FBI deputy director for revealing details of a classified briefing in which the Gang of Eight was informed of an investigation into President Donald Trump.
“I’ve been a little surprised at how much he’s saying about the ongoing investigation, about the Gang of Eight briefing he has described,” former FBI deputy general counsel Greg Bower told CNN on Wednesday.
“He’s clearly trying to sell a book, and he’s on a book tour,” Bower added of McCabe.
During several interviews and in his book, McCabe revealed that in May 2017, he briefed the Gang of Eight, which consists of leading members of Congress, about an FBI counterintelligence investigation into Trump.
McCabe says he opened the investigation into whether Trump was acting as a Russian agent. He claims the catalyst was Trump’s public comments about the ongoing Russia probe, as well as his decision to fire James Comey as FBI director.
McCabe claims that none of the Republicans in the Gang of Eight pushed back against the revelation of a counterintelligence investigation. McCabe, who wasfired from the FBI on March 16, 2018, has cited the lack of a response from Republicans as tacit acceptance of the FBI’s investigation into Trump.
But Bower, who was in daily contact with McCabe at the FBI, said it is not surprised that Gang of Eight members declined to raise questions in the briefing or that they are refusing to comment on McCabe’s characterization of the briefing.
“I’m not sure it’s all that interesting, to be honest with you,” Bower said of the lack of response from Republicans. “I’ve been in many Gang of Eight briefings, they are very sober affairs. Questions are asked sometimes, but the senators and House members are, for a change, are more in ‘listen mode’ more than anything else.”
He went on to say that he is “not surprised that members like Leader McConnell are saying, ‘I just can’t comment on this.’”
“I am surprised that McCabe is talking so much about it.”