Andrew McCabe

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For the Australian track and field athlete, see Andrew McCabe (sprinter).
Andrew McCabe
File:Andrew McCabe official portrait.jpg
Deputy Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation
In office
February 1, 2016 – January 29, 2018
President Barack Obama
Donald Trump
Preceded by Mark F. Giuliano
Succeeded by David Bowdich (Acting)
Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation
In office
May 9, 2017 – August 2, 2017
President Donald Trump
Preceded by James Comey
Succeeded by Christopher A. Wray
Personal details
Born Andrew George McCabe
(1968-03-18) March 18, 1968 (age 50)[1]
Hartford, Connecticut, U.S.
Political party Republican[2][3]
Spouse(s) Jill McCabe
Education Duke University (BA)
Washington University in St. Louis (JD)

Andrew George McCabe[4] (born March 18, 1968) is an American attorney who served as the Deputy Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation from February 2016 to January 2018.

From May 9, 2017, to August 2, 2017, McCabe was the Acting Director of the FBI after James Comey was dismissed by President Donald Trump. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions stated that McCabe was one of several candidates under consideration for Director. President Trump ultimately chose Christopher A. Wray, the former Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department's Criminal Division, to succeed Comey.[5] Once Wray was sworn in, McCabe returned to the position of Deputy Director.[6]

On January 29, 2018, McCabe stepped down from his position as Deputy Director of the FBI.[7][8][9] He was fired by Attorney General Jeff Sessions on March 16, 2018, only 26 hours before his scheduled retirement.[10][11]

Early life

McCabe was born in 1968. He graduated from The Bolles School in Jacksonville, Florida, in 1986.[12] He graduated from Duke University in 1990 and obtained a J.D. degree from Washington University in St. Louis in 1993.[4][13] During law school he interned in the criminal division of the United States Department of Justice.[13] Because of a hiring freeze,[13] McCabe spent three years in a private law practice before joining the FBI in 1996 in Philadelphia.[14][15]


McCabe began his FBI career in the New York Field Office[14] in 1996.[16] While there, he was on the SWAT team.[17] In 2003, he began work as a supervisory special agent at the Eurasian Organized Crime Task Force.[18] Later, McCabe held management positions in the FBI Counterterrorism Division,[14] the FBI National Security Branch[19] and the FBI's Washington Field Office.[20] In 2009, he served as the first director of the High-Value Detainee Interrogation Group, a program to research interrogation techniques that was created after the Department of Defense Directive 2310 ban of waterboarding and other interrogation techniques.[13] McCabe was part of the investigation of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing.[17] McCabe secured the arrest of Ahmed Abu Khattala for suspected involvement in the 2012 Benghazi attack.[17]

FBI Director Comey appointed McCabe as Deputy Director of the FBI on January 29, 2016, and he assumed those duties on February 1, 2016.[21]

File:Andrew G. McCabe.jpg
McCabe speaking in 2016

The Inspector General of the Department of Justice and the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee are investigating McCabe for concerns that he should have recused himself from the investigation of Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server because of a potential conflict of interest caused by donations to his wife's Virginia State Senate campaign.[22][23] FBI documents released in January 2018 showed that McCabe had in 2015, before his wife ran for political office in Virginia, notified the FBI about his wife's plans and consulted with the FBI about how he would avoid a conflict of interest.[24] The documents showed that McCabe followed FBI protocol regarding potential conflicts of interest.[25] McCabe did not oversee the Clinton email server probe while his wife was running for office and he was excluded from FBI investigations into public corruption cases in Virginia.[24] According to USA Today, "the internal documents, published on the FBI's website, support what the bureau has asserted previously: that McCabe had no conflicts when he assumed oversight of the Clinton investigation. His role began in February 2016, following his appointment as deputy director and three months after his wife, Jill McCabe, lost her bid for a state Senate seat."[24]

On May 9, 2017, McCabe became acting director of the FBI after Trump dismissed Comey as director.[26] In the absence of a Senate-confirmed director, the deputy director automatically becomes acting director.[19] Statute allows the president to choose an interim FBI director (acting director) outside of the standard order of succession.[27] That process began on May 10, 2017, as Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein interviewed four candidates to serve as interim FBI director.[28] Sessions said that McCabe was "also under consideration."[28] Shortly after Trump fired Comey, McCabe visited the White House for an introductory meeting in the Oval Office with the president, during which time the president asked McCabe who he had voted for in the 2016 election.[29]

The Wall Street Journal published on October 20, 2016, an account of Justice Department and FBI internal deliberations regarding an investigation of the Clinton Foundation that began in 2015. Four FBI field offices — New York, Los Angeles, Washington and Little Rock — were pursuing the investigation, with some field agents advocating that it be aggressively continued, while some supervisors and prosecutors believed there was insufficient evidence and that the investigation was too expansive. In July 2016, McCabe decided that the New York FBI office would continue investigating, with assistance from Little Rock. The Journal reported that a senior Justice Department official called McCabe to express his disagreement with this decision, with McCabe reportedly asking, "Are you telling me that I need to shut down a validly predicated investigation?," to which the unnamed official replied, “Of course not.”[30]

Trump has criticized McCabe on several occasions, including reportedly calling him to complain that Comey had been allowed to fly home from Los Angeles on a government plane after his abrupt dismissal, and suggesting that McCabe ask his wife "how it feels to be a loser."[31] In January 2018 it was reported that Attorney General Sessions had been pressuring FBI Director Wray to fire McCabe. However, Wray refused and reportedly threatened to resign if McCabe was removed.[32][33] Some Trump supporters have characterized McCabe as belonging to a secretive "deep state" that seeks to subvert the president.[34] The Nunes Memo, which alleges improper activities in seeking a warrant to surveil former Trump associate Carter Page, asserts that McCabe "testified before the [House Intelligence] Committee in December 2017 that no surveillance warrant would have been sought from the FISC without the Steele dossier information," which dossier many Trump supporters insist is completely false. However, McCabe's testimony was in classified session and no public transcript is available to confirm the Nunes memo assertion; disclosing contents of the classified testimony would be unlawful. The Nunes memo also asserts that a text message from Peter Strzok discusses "a meeting with Deputy Director McCabe to discuss an “insurance” policy against President Trump’s election." However, The Wall Street Journal reported on December 18, 2017, that Strzok associates said the "insurance policy" meant the FBI continuing its investigation into possible collusion between Trump and Russians, in case Trump won the election against long odds. The person Strzok had texted, Lisa Page, had previously suggested there was no urgency to the investigation because Hillary Clinton was certain to be elected.[35][36]

McCabe announced his resignation as deputy director on January 29, 2018, and had been on leave until his scheduled retirement date on March 18, 2018.[37] On March 14, 2018, the FBI's Office of Professional Responsibility recommended that McCabe should be fired because of an internal report that he misled investigators about his decision to allow FBI officials to give information about the Clinton Foundation investigation to the media.[38] The decision of whether to fire him was up to Attorney General Sessions, who fired him on March 16, 2018.[39] McCabe told The New York Times, "The idea that I was dishonest is just wrong. This is part of an effort to discredit me as a witness."[40] McCabe was dismissed less than two days before he would have collected a full early pension for his FBI career. He may have to wait until age 57-62 to begin collecting pension benefits.[41]

Personal life

McCabe is married to Jill McCabe, a pediatrician, who was a Democratic candidate for the Virginia state senate in 2015.[42] They have two children, a son and a daughter.[43] McCabe is a triathlete who biked 35 miles to work from his home in Virginia.[17]


  1. Pappas, Alex (March 15, 2018). "IG could soon release explosive report on FBI's Clinton probe, as Sessions weighs firing McCabe". Fox News. Retrieved March 16, 2018. 
  2. Apuzzo, Matt; Goldman, Adam (March 1, 2018). "Andrew McCabe, Ex-Deputy Director of F.B.I., Will Be Faulted for Leaks". The New York Times. Retrieved March 2, 2018. 
  3. Nobles, Ryan. "McCabe did not vote in 2016 general election, but did vote in 2016 GOP presidential primary". Retrieved March 2, 2018. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 "The School of Law" (PDF), One Hundred and Thirty-Second Commencement, Washington University in St. Louis, p. 35, 1993 
  5. Thrush, Glenn; Davis, Julie Hirschfeld (June 7, 2017). "Trump Picks Christopher Wray to Be F.B.I. Director". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved June 7, 2017. 
  6. Max Kutner. Under New Bureau Head, Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe to Remain as Deputy, Despite Trump’s Allegations. Newsweek. August 2, 2017
  7. Sheth, Sonam (January 30, 2018). "The DOJ is reportedly investigating whether Andrew McCabe deliberately slowed the FBI's Clinton email probe". Business Insider. Retrieved February 3, 2018. 
  8. Pramuk, Jacob (January 29, 2018). "FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, frequent target of Trump's ire, steps down: NBC News". CNBC. Retrieved January 29, 2018. 
  9. Williams, Katie; Fabian, Jordan (January 29, 2018). "Deputy FBI Director McCabe steps down". The Hill. Retrieved January 30, 2018. 
  10. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named :5
  11. "Andrew McCabe, the former FBI deputy director targeted by Trump, was just fired". Vox. Retrieved March 17, 2018. 
  12. "McCabe '86 Named Acting FBI Director". The Bolles School. Retrieved May 13, 2017. [dead link]
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 Wilber, Del Quentin (May 5, 2016). "FBI's new second-in-command makes decisions, not headlines". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 31, 2016. 
  14. 14.0 14.1 14.2 "Andrew McCabe". CNBC. September 26, 2016. Retrieved May 10, 2017. 
  15. Trimble, Megan (May 12, 2017). "10 Things You Didn't Know About Andrew McCabe". U.S. News & World Report. Washington, D.C.: U.S. News & World Report, L.P. Retrieved January 29, 2018. 
  16. Gurman, Sadie; Tucker, Eric; Miller, Zeke; Colvin, Jill (January 29, 2018). "FBI’s McCabe, a frequent Trump target, abruptly leaves post". The Seattle Times. Seattle: The Seattle Times Company. The Associated Press. Retrieved January 29, 2018. 
  17. 17.0 17.1 17.2 17.3 Adam Goldman; Matt Apuzzo (May 12, 2017). "Andrew McCabe Is Known at F.B.I. for His Precision and Intellect". The New York Times. p. A18. Retrieved May 14, 2017. 
  18. Clemens, Jay (July 31, 2015). "Andrew McCabe Named FBI Associate Deputy Director". ExecutiveGov. Executive Mosaic. Archived from the original on August 12, 2015. 
  19. 19.0 19.1 Williams, Janice (May 9, 2017). "President Donald Tump said "a search for a new permanent FBI director will begin immediately"". Newsweek. Retrieved May 10, 2017. 
  20. Wilkers, Ross (24 October 2013). "Andrew McCabe Appointed FBI Natl Security Branch Lead". ExecutiveGov. Executive Mosaic. Archived from the original on November 21, 2013. 
  21. "Andrew G. McCabe Named Deputy Director of the FBI" (Press release). Federal Bureau of Investigation. January 29, 2016. Retrieved October 31, 2016. 
  22. "Grassley Examines Potential Conflicts in Top FBI Official’s Role in Russia Collusion Probe". March 28, 2017. Retrieved May 12, 2017. 
  23. Kutner, Max (May 10, 2017). "FBI Acting Director Andrew McCabe is also under review for the Clinton email investigation". Newsweek. Retrieved May 12, 2017. 
  24. 24.0 24.1 24.2 "FBI documents: Andrew McCabe had no conflict in Hillary Clinton email probe". USA TODAY. Retrieved January 5, 2018. 
  25. "Emails released by the FBI shed new light on deputy director's recusal from Clinton probe". Business Insider. Retrieved January 9, 2018. 
  26. Strohm, Chris; Talev, Margaret; Dennis, Steven T. (May 9, 2017). "Trump Fires FBI Director James Comey Amid Russia Meddling Probe". Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved May 10, 2017. 
  27. "Designation of Officers of the Federal Bureau of Investigation". Federal Register. February 14, 2007. pp. 7341–7344. Retrieved May 11, 2017. 
  28. 28.0 28.1 Keith, Tamara (May 10, 2017). "Despite Recusal Pledge, Sessions Interviewing Candidates For Interim FBI Director". NPR. Retrieved May 11, 2017. 
  29. Tatum, Sophie (January 23, 2018). "Washington Post: Trump asked acting FBI director McCabe who he voted for in 2016". CNN. Retrieved January 23, 2018. President Donald Trump asked acting FBI director Andrew McCabe who he voted for in the 2016 election in an introductory Oval Office meeting, The Washington Post reported Tuesday, citing several current and former US officials. The meeting happened in May, not long after Trump fired former FBI director James Comey, according to the Post. 
  30. Barrett, Devlin (October 30, 2016). "FBI in Internal Feud Over Hillary Clinton Probe". Retrieved March 17, 2018 – via 
  31. "Trump’s complaints against McCabe included Comey's ride home". Retrieved March 17, 2018. 
  32. Swan, Jonathon (January 23, 2018). "Scoop: FBI director threatened to resign amid Trump, Sessions pressure". Axios. Retrieved January 29, 2018. 
  33. Barrett, Devlin; Rucker, Philip (January 29, 2018). "FBI Director Wray resists pressure from Sessions to replace senior personnel as tensions swell". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved January 29, 2018. 
  34. Benner, Katie; Apuzzo, Matt; Goldman, Adam (March 14, 2018). "Andrew McCabe, a Symbol of Trump’s F.B.I. Ire, Faces Possible Firing". Retrieved March 17, 2018 – via 
  35. "Read: the full text of the Nunes memo". Retrieved March 17, 2018. 
  36. Wilber, Del Quentin (December 18, 2017). "In FBI Agent’s Account, ‘Insurance Policy’ Text Referred to Russia Probe". Retrieved March 17, 2018 – via 
  37. "FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe stepping down". January 29, 2018. Retrieved January 29, 2018. 
  38. Brown, Pamela (March 15, 2018). "Andrew McCabe pleading case at Justice Department". CNN. Retrieved March 16, 2018. 
  39. Williams, Pete (March 16, 2018). "Sessions fires McCabe before he can retire". NBC News. Retrieved 17 March 2018. 
  40. Apuzzo, Matt; Goldman, Adam (March 16, 2018). "Andrew McCabe, a Target of Trump’s F.B.I. Scorn, Is Fired Over Candor Questions". Retrieved March 17, 2018 – via 
  42. "Trump slams FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe for donations to wife's campaign". December 23, 2017. Retrieved January 29, 2018. 
  43. "Trump slams FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe for donations to wife's campaign". May 9, 2017. Retrieved January 31, 2018. 

External links

Government offices
Preceded by
Mark F. Giuliano
Deputy Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation
Succeeded by
David Bowdich
Preceded by
James Comey
Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation

Succeeded by
Christopher A. Wray