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What Andrew McCabe told "60 Minutes" about Trump and the 25th Amendment

Details emerging over conversations about 25th Amendment
New details emerge in high level conversations about invoking 25th Amendment 02:47

In an interview to air on "60 Minutes" on Sunday, Feb. 17, former Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe told correspondent Scott Pelley he briefly discussed invoking the 25th Amendment with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

The full transcript of that part of the interview, updated following the airing of the interview on Sunday, follows:

ANDREW MCCABE: Discussion of the 25th amendment was simply Rod raised the issue and discussed it with me in the context of thinking about how many other cabinet officials might support such an effort. I didn't have much to contribute, to be perfectly honest, in that — conversation. So I listened to what he had to say. But, to be fair, it was an unbelievably stressful time. I can't even describe for you how many things must have been coursing through the deputy attorney general's mind at that point. So it was really something that he kinda threw out in a very frenzied chaotic conversation about where we were and what we needed to do next.
SCOTT PELLEY: What seemed to be coursing through the mind of the deputy attorney general was getting rid of the president of the United States 


SCOTT PELLEY: One way or another. 

ANDREW MCCABE: I can't confirm that. But what I can say is the deputy attorney general was definitely very concerned about the president, about his capacity, and about his intent at that point in time. 

SCOTT PELLEY: How did he bring up the idea of the 25th amendment to you? 

ANDREW MCCABE: Honestly, I don't remember. He, it was just another kinda topic that he jumped to in the midst of a wide-ranging conversation. 

SCOTT PELLEY: Seriously? (LAUGH) Just—
SCOTT PELLEY: Another topic
SCOTT PELLEY: Did you counsel him on that? 

ANDREW MCCABE:  I didn't. I mean, he was discussing other cabinet members and whether or not people would support such an idea, whether or not other cabinet members would, shared, his belief that the president was—was really concerning, was concerning Rod at that time. 

SCOTT PELLEY: Rosenstein was actually openly talking about whether there was a majority of the cabinet who would vote to remove the president. 

ANDREW MCCABE: That's correct. Counting votes or possible votes.
SCOTT PELLEY: Did he assign specific votes to specific people? 

ANDREW MCCABE: No, not that I recall. 

SCOTT PELLEY: As you're sitting in this meeting in the Justice Department, talking about removing the president of the United States, you were thinking what? 

ANDREW MCCABE: How did I get here? Confronting these confounding legal issues of such immense importance, not just to the FBI but to the entire country, it was — it was disorienting.

In a preview of the interview Thursday on "CBS This Morning," Pelley described what was discussed in the interview. "There were meetings at the Justice Department at which it was discussed whether the vice president and a majority of the Cabinet could be brought together to remove the president of the United States under the 25th Amendment," he said.

"They were counting noses," Pelley explained. "Not asking Cabinet members whether they would vote for or against removing [him]. But they were speculating, 'This person would be with us. That person would not be.' They were counting noses in that effort."

McCabe's spokesperson, Melissa Schwartz, said in a statement to CBS News' Paula Reid on Friday that "at no time did Mr. McCabe participate in any extended discussions about the use of the 25th Amendment, nor is he aware of any such discussions."

"He was present and participated in a discussion that included a comment by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein regarding the 25th Amendment," Schwartz said, but she added this anecdote was not included in his book.

The Justice Department also said in a statement, "As the Deputy Attorney General previously has stated, based on his personal dealings with the President, there is no basis to invoke the 25th Amendment, nor was the [deputy attorney general] in a position to consider invoking the 25th Amendment."

Editor's Note: The transcript of the interview with Andrew McCabe has been updated following the full airing of the "60 Minutes" interview on Sunday evening. 

With reporting by Paula Reid.

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