WASHINGTON —FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe has told FBI staff he is stepping down effective Monday, sources tell CNN.
McCabe had become a central target of President Donald Trump’s ire toward the FBI over its involvement in the investigation into potential collusion between his campaign and Russia during the 2016 election.
McCabe was eligible to retire in March, but with his accumulated leave, he is able to step down earlier. His departure came as a surprise even to some expecting his March retirement.
Various sources described McCabe’s departure as a mutual decision, while others said it was the result of pressure to step down. One source briefed on the matter said McCabe announced his decision to senior executives and portrayed it as his choice. The source disputed the characterization that McCabe was removed.
But a source familiar with the matter said FBI Director Christopher Wray told McCabe he is bringing in his own team, which he would not be a part of, and that it was McCabe’s decision whether to stay at the FBI or leave.
Trump learned about the departure Monday morning, a White House official told CNN. The President did not answer a reporter’s question at the White House about McCabe’s departure.