Federal Bureau of Investigation deputy director steps down amid Trump criticism

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FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, who has been a target of unrelenting criticism from President Trump, abruptly announced his resignation Monday, according to a senior government official who was not authorized to comment publicly on personnel matters.

Asked about McCabe's departure, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told reporters, "I can tell you the president wasn't part of this decision-making process".

Earlier this month, reports surfaced that Attorney General Jeff Sessions pressured FBI Director Christopher Wray to push McCabe out, and the Washington Post reported that Trump, after firing former FBI Director James Comey, asked McCabe how he voted in the 2016 election.

In December, he tweeted that McCabe was "racing the clock to retire with full benefits".

WASHINGTON - Andrew McCabe on Monday left his job as deputy director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation after enduring withering attacks from President Trump and other Republicans.

Last week, The Washington Post reported that after James Comey was sacked in May 2017 and McCabe assumed the director's job on an acting basis, the president asked him in a private discussion whom he had voted for in the presidential election.

Various sources described McCabe's departure as a mutual decision, while others said it was the result of pressure to step down.

Democrats have said those inquires are meant to undermine and distract from Mueller's investigation.

McCabe has become a lightning rod in the political battles surrounding special counsel Robert S. Mueller III's probe into whether any Trump associates co-ordinated with Russian agents to interfere in the 2016 presidential race.

Sanders says the White House has "some concerns" over McCabe's work at the bureau. "90 days to go?!" The FBI has said McCabe received the necessary ethics approval before his wife received the donations.

Republicans have noted that McCabe's wife previously ran as a Democrat for a seat in Virginia's state Senate and received donation funds from then-Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, a close ally of Hillary and Bill Clinton, the former president.

"I don't think so. No".

Axios reported last week that Wray threatened to resign if President Trump ordered him to fire McCabe. The Post reported that McCabe told Trump he did not vote in the election.