News ID: 211829
Published: 0553 GMT March 17, 2018

Trump praises FBI official's firing, but critics call it 'dangerous'

Trump praises FBI official's firing, but critics call it 'dangerous'

US President Donald Trump has praised the firing of a senior FBI agent just two days before his retirement, calling it a "great day for democracy" and hoping it would bring an end to a probe into alleged collusion between Trump’s election campaign and Russia.

But critics slammed the ouster as a "dangerous" ploy to discredit the nation’s top law enforcement agency as well as the work of US Special Counsel Robert Mueller, an independent prosecutor appointed by the US Justice Department to investigate Russia’s alleged meddling in the 2016 US election.

Trump took to Twitter on Saturday, writing, “Andrew McCabe FIRED, a great day for the hard working men and women of the FBI - A great day for Democracy.”

US Attorney General Jeff Sessions fired McCabe on Friday over accusation that that he misled internal investigators at the Justice Department.

McCabe, however, said in a statement that his firing is part of a larger effort to discredit the FBI and Muller’s investigation.

McCabe was the FBI's deputy under the agency’s former director James Comey, who was also sacked by Trump last year. Comey had been leading the Russia probe himself before he was fired.

In his latest Twitter message, Trump wrote, “Sanctimonious James Comey was his boss and made McCabe look like a choirboy. He knew all about the lies and corruption going on at the highest levels of the FBI!”

Mueller is also examining if the president obstructed justice through firing of Comey.

Trump told Russian officials in a meeting in Washington last year that Comey's dismissal eased “great pressure” on him, The New York Times reported in May, citing a document summarizing the meeting.

His firing sparked controversy among both Democratic and Republican lawmakers after it was claimed that the president had asked Comey to end the investigation into alleged ties between Michael Flynn, his former national security adviser, with a Russian diplomat.

Flynn was fired in February last year over undisclosed contacts with the Russian ambassador to the US.

Trump's personal attorney John Dowd said that he hoped the firing of the FBI deputy would bring an end to the probe.

House Intelligence Committee member Representative Eric Swalwell lashed out at the president saying Trump would also be losing his job soon.

He retweeted Trump’s message and wrote, “Gloat now, but you will be fired soon. And it’s not going to be done cowardly, as you’ve done to so many who’ve served you.”

“There’s a storm gathering, Mr. President, and it’s going to wipe out you and your corrupt organization all the way down to the studs,” he wrote on Saturday.

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