FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe Stepping Down

Andrew McCabe / Getty Images

FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe is stepping down from the bureau effective Monday, according to multiple reports.

McCabe's decision comes weeks before he is eligible to retire with full benefits in mid-March, NBC News reported.

The longtime FBI employee, who has served at the bureau since 1996 under former directors Robert Mueller and James Comey, will remain on the agency's payroll and be on leave until mid-March, when he will officially retire. He said last month that he planned to step down this year, but submitted his resignation earlier than expected.

McCabe served as the FBI's acting director after President Donald Trump fired Comey in May, remaining in the position until Christopher Wray took over the role in August.

Trump learned about McCab'e departure on Monday morning, according to CNN.

McCabe has been at the center of recent tensions between the White House and the FBI. The Washington Post reported earlier this month that after Trump fired Comey, the president met with McCabe in the Oval Office and asked him whom he voted for in the 2016 presidential election. Trump has disputed the report's claims.

Trump also has criticized McCabe because his wife, Jill McCabe, a Democrat, ran for a state Senate seat in Virginia and received nearly $500,000 in donations from a political action committee controlled by then-Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D.), a close friend and longtime ally of Bill and Hillary Clinton.

The president has accused McCabe of mishandling the FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton's private email server, suggesting the FBI veteran had political motivations not to hurt Clinton's candidacy.