CNN has signed former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe as a contributor despite an inspector general report accusing McCabe of lying multiple times under oath to federal investigators prior to his firing from the FBI last year. The news comes in the midst of McCabe's ongoing lawsuit against the FBI, alleging his firing was illegal and part of a political purge.
CNN's Oliver Darcy confirmed McCabe's hiring on Twitter.
Some news: CNN announces Andrew McCabe has been signed as a contributor.
— Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) August 23, 2019
The inspector general's report accused McCabe of lying to federal investigators about his authorization of disclosures to the media. McCabe allegedly sanctioned the disclosure of a federal investigation into the Clinton Foundation to a Wall Street Journal reporter, then denied doing so on multiple occasions, including twice under oath.
The report states that "disclosure of the existence of an ongoing investigation in the manner described in this report violated the FBI's and the Department's media policy and constituted misconduct," according to the Wall Street Journal.
President Trump quickly jumped on the news on Twitter at the time, tweeting, "DOJ just issued the McCabe report – which is a total disaster. He LIED! LIED! LIED! McCabe was totally controlled by Comey – McCabe is Comey!! No collusion, all made up by this den of thieves and lowlifes!"
The IG's office referred to the report to the FBI, and the bureau's Office of Professional Responsibility recommended firing McCabe to then-attorney general Jeff Sessions. Sessions promptly fired McCabe a little more than a day before McCabe was set to retire and become eligible for pension benefits from the bureau.
"Mr. McCabe had made an unauthorized disclosure to the news media and lacked candor — including under oath — on multiple occasions," Sessions's rationale read, according to the Wall Street Journal. He specifically mentioned the IG's report and the Office of Professional Responsibility's recommendation.
McCabe filed a complaint alleging that his termination was illegal. "It was Trump's unconstitutional plan and scheme to discredit and remove DOJ and FBI employees who were deemed to be his partisan opponents because they were not politically loyal to him," the lawsuit alleges, according to the Washington Post.
The move follows several scandals involving CNN hosts and contributors. Contributor April Ryan's bodyguard was charged with assault for physically removing a journalist from an event at which Ryan was appearing. Host Chris Cuomo promised to "do better" after a viral video showed him melting down over being called "Fredo" by a heckler. Host Don Lemon has vehemently denied accusations of sexual assault stemming from an alleged encounter with a man in a Hamptons bar last year.