Photo: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

Former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe is looking to sue for defamation, wrongful termination and other possible civil claims, his lawyer told reporters Friday.

What to watch: McCabe’s lawyer, Michael Bromwich, also said his client told then-FBI Director James Comey that he was pushing back on stories about the Hillary Clinton investigation — which would mean he didn’t lack candor. They are seeking ways to release emails and phone call transcripts between McCabe and Comey to shed light on the issue.

Timing: Bromwich said McCabe's legal team has yet to work out a timeframe for when they plan to file the suits, but the team "want[s] these to be solid. We’ll file when we’re ready."

Bromwich also accused McCabe's opponents, including President Trump, of "continuing slander":

“We’ve never seen anything like this before. It does damage not only to Andy McCabe individually but also to the FBI as an institution.”

The intrigue: Bromwich said that McCabe was "upset and disappointed" by some of the things former FBI Director James Comey has said about him. But he added they are not suggesting that Comey is "making things up or lying."

  • "Nobody’s memory is perfect, people are fallible," Bromwich said when asked about the differences between McCabe and Comey's stories. "McCabe has a clear recollection, Comey does not."
  • Bromwich added that his team hasn't managed to find any witnesses to corroborate McCabe's version of the story, but said they also haven't had the necessary time to do so.

One big thing: Bromwich announced the launch of the Andrew McCabe Legal Defense Fund. Its three trustees are looking at transferring the $550,000 that was raised via a GoFundMe campaign over to the more formal legal fund.

Bromwich's bottom line: He believes that if the case against McCabe is evaluated on the merits and facts "there will be a decision not to prosecute on any charges whatsoever," again emphasizing the low standard for a referral from the OIG's office.  

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Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7 p.m. ET: 12,859,834 — Total deaths: 567,123 — Total recoveries — 7,062,085Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 7 p.m. ET: 3,297,501— Total deaths: 135,155 — Total recoveries: 1,006,326 — Total tested: 40,282,176Map.
  3. States: Florida smashes single-day record for new coronavirus cases with over 15,000 — NYC reports zero coronavirus deaths for first time since pandemic hit.
  4. Public health: Ex-FDA chief projects "apex" of South's coronavirus curve in 2-3 weeks — Coronavirus testing czar: Lockdowns in hotspots "should be on the table"
  5. Education: Betsy DeVos says schools that don't reopen shouldn't get federal funds — Pelosi accuses Trump of "messing with the health of our children."

Scoop: How the White House is trying to trap leakers

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President Trump's chief of staff, Mark Meadows, has told several White House staffers he's fed specific nuggets of information to suspected leakers to see if they pass them on to reporters — a trap that would confirm his suspicions. "Meadows told me he was doing that," said one former White House official. "I don't know if it ever worked."

Why it matters: This hunt for leakers has put some White House staffers on edge, with multiple officials telling Axios that Meadows has been unusually vocal about his tactics. So far, he's caught only one person, for a minor leak.

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Lauren Boebert posing in her restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, on April 24. Photo: Emily Kask/AFP

At least 11 Republican congressional nominees have publicly supported or defended the QAnon conspiracy theory movement or some of its tenets — and more aligned with the movement may still find a way onto ballots this year.

Why it matters: Their progress shows how a fringe online forum built on unsubstantiated claims and flagged as a threat by the FBI is seeking a foothold in the U.S. political mainstream.