Washington, Jan 30 (IANS) The Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Deputy Director Andrew McCabe resigned on Monday amid repeated attacks by the US President Donald Trump who accused him of political bias.
The move by McCabe comes a week after speculations and reports that Trump wanted him out. The media last week reported that Trump had asked McCabe in an Oval Office meeting whom he voted for in 2016 elections.
McCabe was scheduled to officially retire in mid-March. He will remain on the FBI payroll until he is eligible to retire with full benefits, the BBC reported.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a press briefing: “This decision was not made by the White House. The president was not part of this decision making process.”
McCabe briefly served as acting FBI Director in May last year after Trump fired its previous chief, James Comey.
Later, Christopher Wray was appointed as the new FBI director, and he was confirmed by the Senate in August.
According to media reports, Wray also threatened to resign after being pressured by Attorney General Jeff Sessions to fire Mr McCabe.
A career civil servant who had served at the FBI since 1996, McCabe has been at the center of ongoing tensions between the agency and Republicans.
He has been lashed out at by Republican lawmakers alleging systemic bias against Trump at the top tier of the FBI, Xinhua reported.
The Republican president also targeted McCabe for the FBI’s investigation into 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while serving as the country’s secretary of state.
Trump has also critcised McCabe previously because his wife, Jill McCabe, ran as a Democrat for a Senate seat in Virginia.
On Twitter, Trump has railed against McCabe and his wife, calling the FBI chief a “Comey friend”.
“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?” Trump wrote on Twitter in December.
Earlier, he wrote: “Problem is that the acting head of the FBI & the person in charge of the Hillary investigation, Andrew McCabe, got $700,000 from H for wife!”