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Ashburn’s McCabe stepping down as FBI director

Andrew McCabe of Ashburn is reportedly stepping down from the FBI. Courtesy Photo/FBI.gov
FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, a target of frequent and aggressive criticism by President Donald Trump, abruptly stepped down from his position Monday ahead of his planned retirement this spring.

A 22-year veteran of the FBI, McCabe has been publicly and repeatedly lambasted over the past year by Trump, who has accused him of bias because of his wife’s political connections and an FBI investigation that produced no criminal charges against Hillary Clinton.

McCabe, an Ashburn resident who has held a number of FBI leadership roles and been heavily involved in investigations into major crimes including the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, becomes eligible for retirement in a matter of weeks. FBI staff learned Monday that McCabe was leaving the bureau’s No. 2 post effective immediately, according to people who spoke only on condition of anonymity to discuss an internal personnel move. He is expected to retire with full pension benefits.

The departure comes as FBI Director Christopher Wray makes changes to his senior leadership team, replacing two other top aides last week. Such changes are not unusual when a new director takes charge, but they are notable amid Trump’s public pressure on Wray to get rid of officials who were confidants of James Comey, whom he fired as FBI director last May.

In a message Monday to FBI employees, Wray said McCabe would be retiring on March 18 and denied that the move stemmed from political pressure.

“I will not be swayed by political or other pressure in my decision-making,” Wray wrote.

The exit comes amid multiple ongoing investigations, including a Justice Department watchdog probe into the actions of McCabe and other top FBI officials during the Clinton email probe. In addition, special counsel Robert Mueller is investigating whether the Trump campaign improperly coordinated with Russia during the 2016 presidential election and whether Trump sought to obstruct the inquiry by, among other actions, firing Comey.

McCabe has been repeatedly assailed by Trump since the fall of 2016, when it was revealed that his wife had accepted campaign contributions from the political action committee of then-Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a Democrat and close Clinton ally, during a failed state Senate run. That episode is among the decisions under review by the Justice Department’s inspector general, which is expected to complete its report soon.

The FBI has said McCabe received the necessary ethics approval, and that at the time of the contributions, he was not in a supervisory role on the Clinton email investigation. But that has not stopped Trump and Republicans in Congress from repeatedly asserting that McCabe, and other FBI officials, are partisan law enforcement officials harboring a bias against him.

Responding to December news reports that McCabe would retire, the president wrote: “How can FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, the man in charge, along with leakin’ James Comey, of the Phony Hillary Clinton investigation (including her 33,000 illegally deleted emails) be given $700,000 for wife’s campaign by Clinton Puppets during investigation?”

Another of the president’s tweets from last year said: “Why didn’t A.G. Sessions replace Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, a Comey friend who was in charge of Clinton investigation,” referring to Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters Monday that Trump was not part of the decision-making process but that he stood by his criticism of McCabe. Amid the tensions, Wray and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein traveled to the White House Monday to meet with chief of staff John Kelly, according to a senior White House official who was not authorized to discuss the meeting publicly and requested anonymity.

The FBI’s No. 3 official, David Bowdich, has been named acting deputy director.

Though McCabe has pushed back against White House narratives that Comey was not well-liked within the bureau, and that an ongoing FBI investigation into Trump campaign ties to Russia was not a significant matter for the FBI, he has not publicly discussed in detail his interactions with Trump or shared any personal observations of the president.

That could change upon his departure from the FBI. Comey, for instance, after his firing authorized a close friend to share with reporters details of his own encounters with the president that he said troubled him. And former CIA Director John Brennan and James Clapper, the retired director of national intelligence, have been outspoken about their own views of Trump.

McCabe became deputy director in 2016 following earlier jobs running the FBI’s Washington field office and serving as head of its national security branch. A Duke University-educated lawyer, he joined the FBI in 1996 and worked on organized crime in New York.

He took over as acting director following Trump’s May 9 firing of Comey, and was among the officials interviewed for the position, which ultimately went to Wray, a former Justice Department official. The Washington Post reported last week that Trump asked McCabe whom he had voted for in the presidential election. Trump has said he does not recall asking that question.

McCabe’s defenders call him a thoughtful, intelligent and committed career agent.

“FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe is, and has been, a dedicated public servant who has served this country well,” former Attorney General Eric Holder tweeted Monday. “Bogus attacks on the FBI and DOJ to distract attention from a legitimate criminal inquiry does long term, unnecessary damage to these foundations of our government.”

Two days after Comey’s firing, McCabe appeared at a congressional hearing and contradicted a White House assertion that Comey had lost the support of FB rank-and-file. He declared, “I can tell you that the majority, the vast majority of FBI employees, enjoyed a deep and positive connection to Director Comey.”

In one of the more dramatic exchanges of the day, he was asked whether the Trump-Russia investigation was a small matter in relation to the other work the FBI is conducting.

“Sir,” he told Sen. Angus King of Maine, “we consider it to be a highly significant investigation.”



Associated Press writers Zeke Miller and Jill Colvin contributed to this report.

Comments


cricket….. cricket…. cricket….
Well, I don’t think McCabe is laughing much at this point. 
SMH… politically motivated FBI…. what a shame


totally exposed to be a partisan hack by today’s events. No wonder he got canned


The released memo now shows McCabe was part of a coup de tat of a duly elected presodent.  He used a phony dossier paid by Clinton as evidence to get a FISA warrant to spy on his political opponent before and after the campaign….the only collusion seems to be the DOJ/FBI with the help of a foreign agent Chris Steele to alter the US election of 2016….and the collusion was done by all Democrats including Comey, Lynch, probably Obama, this is terrible news for America—I hope to see some of these chicago thug politicians locked up…


Not my President. Invoke the 25th Amendment.


Or, show up with a sign that says:

“I, [name], do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.”


If any of you folks in Ashburn are friends with the ex-deputy you should pay him a visit to show your support. I hope I’m wrong but I’m guessing he’s soon to be tied up for about 5-7 years when this all plays out.


Can’t wait for the declassified memo showing the traitorous activities of Democratic members and operatives.


It was sad to see a certain Congressman walk out when USA was being chanted.  Did he expect them to chant Mexico or El Salvador?


After last night’s State of the Union, and hearing how America is WINNING again after eight years in the desert, I believe the majority of American’s can start chanting…. USA… USA… USA….


Funny how when Mitt Romney said in 2012 that Russia was our biggest strategic threat the Dems and the media blasted him for it. “Communism is over, the Russians are our friends now.”

Now all of a sudden they’re our biggest threat because some people don’t like a POTUS who isn’t politically-correct. Looks like Trump Derangement Syndrome has struck again!


The smoke screen that Fox News and Congressman Nunes are running.  Won’t work.  America sees the Russian moneylaunderer through that haze and he’ll be getting justice soon in the form of a blowout election.  We’ve seen enough


News reports say McCabe was “removed”....he was removed due to Wray reading the 4 page memo (soon to be released) and had concerns with the contents of it and Andy’s involvement….He did not retire, he was forced out in disgrace as he and leaking Comey destroyed the reputation of the FBI…Loretta “tarmac meeting” Lynch in this picture destroyed the DOJ and colluded with MCCabe to exonerate Hillary for crimes she committed…I guess the 700k Andy took was Hillary’s get out of jail free card…cant wait to see this all come out….it would have never seen the light of day if crooked hillary was elected…


@LoudounClear What’s Trump’s ‘smoke screen’?


amerigirl - Do you do all your posting right out of the local DNC headquarters?  Every post is right out of their talking points playbook.


Trump apologists will do and say anything to protect what they know their leader must be hiding.  If he had nothing to hide, he wouldn’t need this smoke screen would he?  Wake up, you’re being played…


I believe we will find his stepping down has more to do with the IG report which is about to come out and less to do with being “lambasted” by the President.

Amerigirl you do understand why the electoral college was put in place by the founders don’t you? Somehow I don’t think you do or you would understand the popular vote is meaningless. Please tell me what law Trump is being accused of breaking ... Contrary to popular belief there is no law against “collusion” unless one is talking about business interests and insider trading. There is no obstruction of justice for the firing of Comey ,, As the President, Trump can fire any one within his administration at anytime for any reason.

If Muller had Trump on any conspiracy with the Russians to effect the outcome of the election we would already know about it. This is why Flynn was charged with “lying to the FBI” ,, to bring pressure on him to testify against Trump ... with all the leaks in Washington if Muller had ANYTHING on Trump we would know.

Cant wait for this memo to be released ,, hold on my liberal friends it’s about to get bumpy.


Amerigirl, I hope you are simply trolling for reactions because you can’t truly believe half of what you post.

To be this triggered by any one human being whom you have never met is simply baffling to me and will pray for you.


Let’s consider the credibility of the commenters here.

One says “the investigation is into the Trump’s campaign party’s collusion with Russia, and that has already been proven.”  But is that true?

Let’s take the word of Democrat Senator Diane Feinstein.  Wolf Blitzer asked her “Senator, I asked you if you had actually seen evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians, and you said to me — and I’m quoting you now — you said, ‘not at this time.’ Has anything changed since we spoke last?”

Feinstein’s answer: “Well, not– no, it hasn’t.”


Look, we get it.  The Liberals have TDS (Trump Derangement Syndrome) and can’t shake it.  Hey, even some Establishment Republicans around here have contracted it fearing they can’t control their political party anymore and won’t be able to spend recklessly again either. 

But consider the source for all these unfounded rumors.  When you see written evidence of nefarious acts (e.g. we need an “insurance policy” in case Trump gets elected), then you will know who betrayed their county.


Amerigirl, Trump and Russian collusion is non-existent. The Democrats and Russian collusion is all over the place. Open your eyes!!!


Interesting how story leaves out the $500k donations from McAuliffe, a close Clinton ally for McCabes wife when she ran for office. Drain the swamp.


duly elected President, ha, popular vote loser even with Russian interference. Trump has turned his swamp into a deluge of unqualified self serving rich people. The pee dossier was paid by the DNC and Clinton campaign in 2016 after the funding ran out from a republican who didn’t like Trump. the investigation is into the Trump’s campaign party’s collusion with Russia, and that has already been proven. Who knows where that will lead.
Trump is applying pressure where no president should. The forefathers made the 3 sections of government separate and independent for a reason. Mostly to keep tyrants from taking over it.


Fix your headline. He’s deputy director, not director.


partisan hack should have been jettisoned long ago.


Gee, if only the LTM would have dug into the story early they may have received some national recognition.  You snooze, you lose.


Cadet Bone Spurs will go to federal prison before McCabe or any other public servant who has been smeared by the right wing cabal and Faux News.


McCabe didn’t step down, as you so partisanly describe it. McCabe was “stepped down” by FBI Director Wray.

Next step is to prohibit this filthy swamp-creature from collecting his pension.

Next stop: Leavenworth.


What is going on with that photo?!  As for “the swamp”, Trump filled it with swamp monsters.


He was already planning on stepping down once his pension is fully eligible in March of this year. This is a nothing burger.


hey Andy, return the 500k you took from Clinton…was that the price for this phony special counsel


he should have been fired.  I cant believe the white collar coup de tat he and Peter Stroke perpetrated on a duly elected President.  And to think they used a phony dossier paid by Clinton to wire tap and spy on the political opposition party during and after the election is unbelievable, then to claim collusion with Russia, not mentally fit for office, racist, obstruction, back to racism…people must be proud to be democrat these days….Crooked Hillary is spot on!


McCabe will get the last laugh.


Drain the swamp, another leach gone.

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