FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe has stepped down.
FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe has stepped down.
FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe's resignation Monday amid relentless criticism from the White House sparked a flurry of speculation, including whether the move was promoted by an upcoming Inspector General report on the FBI and whether Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russia's interference in the presidential election, and possible collusion with the Trump officials, is in jeopardy.

Just a week after reports surfaced that FBI Director Christopher Wray threatened to quit rather than bend to pressure to fire McCabe, CBS News reported that Wray pressed his second in command to step down fewer than two months before McCabe was set to retire.

The embattled deputy director, who worked on the bureau's investigation of Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server in 2016, had become a flashpoint for President Trump and his supporters who contended he had a number of conflicts of interest - during her failed 2015 bid for the Virginia State Senate, McCabe's wife had taken a campaign contribution from a PAC administered by Clinton ally former Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe. 

Detractors said McCabe, who's been with the FBI since 1996 and who briefly served as acting director last spring after Trump fired James Comey and before Wray was confirmed, should have recused himself from the Clinton probe. 

But FBI memos and released last fall confirmed that McCabe had indeed followed the agency's protocol for avoiding conflicts of interest, meeting with Office of Integrity and Compliance, which identified areas of conflict, and recusing himself accordingly