Sen. John McCain, the sworn enemy of the President-Elect, admitted Wednesday that he was the one who passed along the scurrilous and fabricated dossier of claims that there was a Russian blackmail plot of Donald Trump.
The Arizona lawmaker issued a public statement amid mounting questions over his role in the affair – and how anybody could publish a document so riddled with errors and unverified claims.
“Late last year, I received sensitive information that has since been made public,” he said, the Daily Mail is reporting. “Upon examination of the contents, and unable to make a judgment about their accuracy, I delivered the information to the Director of the FBI.
That has been the extent of my contact with the FBI or any other government agency regarding this issue.”
That’s his official story, but Watergate reporter Carl Bernstein, said there’s much more to it than that:
Bernstein told CNN:
It came from a former British MI6 agent who was hired from a political opposition research firm in Washington who was doing work about Donald Trump for both Republican and Democratic candidates opposed to Trump.
They were looking at Trumps business ties, they saw some questionable things about Russians, about his businesses in Russia, they in turn hired this MI6 former investigator, he then came up with additional information from his Russian sources, he was very concerned by the implications of it, he then took it to an FBI colleague that he had known in his undercover work for years, he took it to this FBI man in Rome who turned it over to the bureau in Washington in August.
“And then, a former British ambassador to Russia independently was made aware of these findings and he took the information to John McCain – Senator John McCain of Arizona – in the period just after the election, and showed it to McCain – additional findings.
“McCain was sufficiently disturbed by what he read to take it to FBI director James Comey himself personally, they had a five minute meeting the two men, very little was said, McCain turned it over to him and is now awaiting what the FBI’s response is to that information.
McCain has long been at odds with Trump, but things went downhill quickly after Trump made a now-famous remark that McCain might not be a war hero because he was captured.
“I like people who weren’t captured,” he said in 2015.
Even then, McCain refused to withdraw his official endorsement until the salacious tape of Trump making comments about grabbing women emerged.