WASHINGTON, D.C. — President Donald Trump started his Sunday morning by lashing out at special counsel Robert Mueller’s team, former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, and former FBI Director James Comey.
Just a day after news that Mueller had interviewed McCabe and asked him about Comey’s firing, Trump attacked the special counsel’s team, seeming to suggest it has a partisan bias.
“Why does the Mueller team have 13 hardened Democrats, some big Crooked Hillary supporters, and Zero Republicans? Another Dem recently added … does anyone think this is fair? And yet, there is NO COLLUSION!,” Trump wrote on Twitter.
Trump’s criticism of Mueller, a Republican, also came a day after his personal lawyer, John Dowd, called for an end to the special counsel’s probe into Russian election meddling.
“I pray that Acting Attorney General Rosenstein will follow the brilliant and courageous example of the FBI Office of Professional Responsibility and Attorney General Jeff Sessions and bring an end to alleged Russia collusion investigation manufactured by McCabe’s boss James Comey based upon a fraudulent and corrupt dossier,” Dowd told CNN in a statement, reacting to the news of McCabe’s firing on Friday night by Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
Dowd told CNN he was speaking on his own behalf, although he had earlier told the Daily Beast, which first reported the statement, that he was speaking on behalf of the President. Dowd’s comment wasn’t authorized by the President, a person close to Trump told CNN.
The President also called into question news that McCabe had written memos about their interactions. A source told CNN Saturday that Mueller’s team has those memos.
“Spent very little time with Andrew McCabe, but he never took notes when he was with me,” Trump tweeted. “I don’t believe he made memos except to help his own agenda, probably at a later date. Same with lying James Comey. Can we call them Fake Memos?”
McCabe told CNN that he had three in-person interactions and one phone call with Trump.
Trump’s attacks on the special counsel team reinforced demands by Democrats to protect Mueller’s investigation. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Mark Warner, the vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, issued calls to defend the probe following Dowd’s comments.
Schumer said in a statement Sunday morning: “The President is floating trial balloons about derailing the Mueller investigation. Our Republican colleagues, particularly the leadership, have an obligation to our country to stand up now and make it clear that firing Mueller is a red line for our democracy that cannot be crossed.”