I don't see how it can be the case that none of them is accurate. If you asked Lincoln "Is it okay for Stanton to fire McClellan under the authority you have given him", would he answer:So, your three examples are still very, unreasonably, McClellan centric which don't really provide anything resembling the big picture Lincoln has to consider, and nowhere is the option that Lincoln considers the strategic goal of defending Washington/Maryland rather than the reputation of a specific general.
Since none of your options acknowledges the basic strategic Lincoln is operating under, I can't really say any of them is accurate, especially as you refer to McClellan the General in Chief.
"Yes, I thought about that."
"No, I thought about that."
"I didn't think about that."
Either you think something is correct, or incorrect, or you haven't thought about it. There's no other option there.
And to be clear, this is "McClellan as senior Union general". I wanted to check if McClellan was GiC; you've confirmed he was relieved of the duties (though he still holds the position, as I understand it, as he historically did until Halleck replaced him).