Following public pressure from President Trump, FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe is reportedly stepping down from his position—a departure, that while expected, is coming earlier than was originally scheduled.
It was widely understood that McGabe would retire in March of this year, after becoming eligible for his full pension benefits, but reporting on Monday indicates he will use accumulated leave time to reach that retirement date but will step down immediately from serving as the deputy director.
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Citing a source familiar with the development, CBS News reports that McCabe was asked “to step down,” as opposed to leaving voluntarily. “McCabe was under considerable scrutiny from Republicans,” the outlet reports, “as special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian election meddling and any ties to Trump associates continued.” Other outlets, including NBC News, report that McCabe made this decision on his own and that he was not forced out or otherwise influenced by the White House.
According to Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.), if McGabe’s ouster is for anything other than personal reasons, it should be seen as “a problem” for Trump:
Just last month, Trump called McCabe out by name in a series of tweets in which lumped him with former FBI Director James Comey and also referenced his wife’s political career:
Moments after that, Trump accused McCabe of counting down the days until he could claim his retirement benefits: