The howler monkeys of wingnutistan spent the holiday weekend all up in their feelings about the Justice Department not doing LOCK HER UPS to former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe. They were promised scalps, dammit, and now all they've got is a rapidly softening rage boner disappearing under a belly distended by decades of Hannity, Budweiser, and the BarcaLounger. SAD!

On Valentine's Day, the US Attorney's Office in DC sent McCabe's lawyers a love note acknowledging the obvious: that they aren't going to be charging McCabe with shit, so they've finally tapped out and closed the investigation.

"It is an absolute disgrace that they took two years and put my family through this experience for two years before they finally drew the obvious conclusion and one they could have drawn a long, long time ago," McCabe said on CNN, where he is a commentator. But for the MAGA nutbags, the real disgrace was that the DOJ didn't charge McCabe with something, anything.


Here's Matt Gaetz flipping out on Fox over the gross injustice of a Republican-controlled Justice Department refusing to take the kill shot when the president puts out a political hit.

McCabe was a registered Republican throughout 2016, as were Robert Mueller and James Comey. Same for recently fired DC US Attorney Jessie Liu, her replacement Timothy Shea, and their boss Bill Barr. But go off about the Deep State swamp people out to get the Republican president, Florida Man!

Naturally Lou Dobbs wasn't going to be outdone by some pissant congressman from the panhandle. Hence the spittle-flecked mania on display Friday night when Dobbs denounced McCabe for having the "temerity to criticize the Department of Justice for daring to threaten his ability to get away with what may well be one of the single greatest abuses of power in American history."

How do you even address that? You don't. So moving on!

It was only Thursday night when Judicial Watch's Tom Fitton jammed himself into a suit and Sharpied in his brows to listen to Dobbs emote about Bill Barr's perfidy! And now this betrayal?

"It's a damn shame that he doesn't get what this president has gone through. And what the American people have gone through, and what his charge is as Attorney General," Dobbs howled in response to Barr's performative complaint that Trump's shit tweeting makes it harder to rig the game in his favor.

"Where the hell is the report? Where the hell are the indictments? Where the hell are the charges against the corrupt — the politically corrupt Deep State within Justice Department, the FBI. And why in the hell aren't we hearing apologies from someone in that rancid, corrupt department about what they permitted?"

Whiiiiiiiiiiiine.

Okay, was that too coherent? How about one in octogenarian Twitterspeak?

Oh, Chuck Grassley, why do you hate the rule of law? Or, more to the point, why do you persist in pretending that you don't know the difference between Roger Stone, who was convicted by a unanimous jury of his peers on seven counts of lying to Congress and the FBI and witness tampering using threats of violence, and Andy McCabe whom the prosecutors couldn't even charge using the massive evidentiary advantage afforded them by the grand jury rules?

Because here on Planet Earth, it's not that the DOJ decided not to charge Andy McCabe. They tried desperately to get it done for two full years. There just wasn't anything to charge him with, which is why a grand jury pretty clearly refused to hand down an indictment. Now, to be fair, we don't know that with 100 percent certainty, since grand jury proceedings are secret. But the DOJ spent most of 2019 telling US District Judge Reggie Walton that it couldn't possibly release information about McCabe's firing for CREW's FOIA suit because it would jeopardize an ongoing criminal investigation.

By September 12, McCabe had been informed that "[t]he Department rejected your appeal of the United States Attorney's Office's decision in this matter." The grand jury was summoned back to DC, and everyone assumed that McCabe's indictment was imminent. And then ... nothing happened. There was no indictment, despite every indication that the DOJ intended to charge McCabe.

Which is REALLY, REALLY WEIRD. As Lawfare noted, for the last year when the DOJ reported the data, exactly five of almost 200,000 cases resulted in no true bill from the grand jury. Apparently, you can indict a ham sandwich, but you can't indict Andy McCabe.

So either DOJ couldn't get an indictment out of the grand jury because their case SUCKED. Or the Justice Department decided not to charge him, despite massive pressure from Donald Trump, because their case SUCKED. And frankly the second option seems even less likely than the first.

By the end of September, Judge Walton had had enough of the government's stalling, particularly in light of Trump's tweets, excoriating prosecutors in a recently unsealed hearing:

Because the public is listening to what's going on, and I don't think people like the fact that you got somebody at the top basically trying to dictate whether somebody should be prosecuted. I just think it's a banana republic when we go down that road and we have those type of statements being made that are conceivably even if not influencing the ultimate decision, I think there are a lot of people on the outside who perceive that there is undue, inappropriate pressure being brought to bear.

By November, he was furious, telling them, "This is not a hard case. I was a good prosecutor for a long time. Deciding whether or not you're going to charge someone with false statements or perjury is not that hard, factually or legally — maybe politically, but not factually or legally."

And still (!!!) those assholes dragged it out another three months before finally admitting they didn't have shit to charge McCabe with. But they managed to flip flop on Roger Stone's sentencing recommendation within 72 hours, didn't they? Because there never was a DEEP STATE. There's just a corps of competent, dedicated bureaucrats following the facts and the law despite massive Republican pressure to smash them and sell the country off for parts.

So, PLEASE, no matter what happens this summer, VOTE BLUE NO MATTER WHO in November. Because at this rate, you might not get another chance to do it.

[CREW FOIA Trial Transcripts, via Politico / WaPo / Lawfare / Politico]

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Liz Dye

Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.

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