Published: Tue, January 30, 2018
World Media | By Shelia Harmon

FBI Deputy Director McCabe steps down

FBI Deputy Director McCabe steps down

Embattled FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe is stepping down from his position amid mounting scrutiny from President Trump and other Republicans.

Trump has accused McCabe of exerting influence on the FBI's decision not to file charges against Hillary Clinton over her use of a private email server.

The Republican president later said he dismissed Comey over "this Russia thing", and the firing has become central to questions about whether Trump has sought to obstruct justice by impeding the Russian probe that Special Counsel Robert Mueller took over after Comey's ouster. Instead, Mr. McCabe made his intentions known to colleagues on Monday, an American official said, and will immediately go on leave.

The White House was not involved in McCabe's decision, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters Monday afternoon.

McCabe has been repeatedly attacked by Trump since the fall of 2016, when it was revealed that his wife had accepted campaign contributions from the political action committee of Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a Democrat and close Clinton ally, during a failed state Senate run. The Post reported that McCabe told Trump he did not vote in the election.

A FBI spokesperson said the bureau had no comment on the reports about McCabe.

His departure comes roughly a week after news emerged that Trump asked McCabe who he voted for during an introductory meeting in May - not long after Comey was abruptly fired.

Per the Pensacola News-Journal, the "headquarter special" was an indication that "the normal processes at the Washington field office weren't followed and he had a very small group of people that had a pro-Hillary Clinton bias who had a direct role in changing the outcome of that investigation from one that likely should have been criminal to one where she was able to walk".

The Washington Post last week reported that Trump, during an Oval Office meeting last spring, pressed McCabe, who was then acting Federal Bureau of Investigation director, about whom he voted for in the 2016 election.

Trump has taken to Twitter in recent months to blast McCabe, asking how he could be in charge of the Clinton probe when his wife got donations from "Clinton Puppets".

Despite pressure from the Whie House, McCabe has held the support of the bureau's leadership, including the new FBI Director. In those texts, they called Trump an "idiot" and a "loathsome human". Sanders also said Trump continues to have "full confidence" in FBI Director Christopher Wray, who the president appointed to replace Comey.

When asked on January 25 to confirm or deny the report, Sanders said: "The president and Andrew McCabe have had limited and pretty non-substantive conversations".

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