McCabe made the announcement hours before a key House committee vote on Monday to publicly release a potentially devastating report on government surveillance abuses. McCabe’s retirement also comes one day after his boss, FBI Director Christopher Wray, visited Capitol to view the same 4-page memo.
McCabe is named in the memo along with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and former FBI Director James Comey, according to the Daily Beast.
According to multiple lawmakers who have viewed the memo, it contains a report on the Obama administration’s abuse of the government surveillance system to spy on at least one member of President Donald Trump’s campaign. House members who have read to document described it as “worse than Watergate” and likened it to a “palace coup.”
McCabe is on terminal leave and will retire when he is eligible for full benefits in March.
Trump criticized McCabe over a $700,000 Senate campaign donation that the deputy director’s wife received from a key Clinton ally while McCabe was in the midst of an investigation into Hillary Clinton’s potentially criminal use of a private email server.
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?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 23, 2017
Trump appears to have known that McCabe was planning to retire.
“FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe is racing the clock to retire with full benefits,” Trump tweeted on Dec. 23, “90 days to go?!!!”
The House memo on surveillance abuses is set to be released amid renewed scrutiny of two top FBI officials who exchanged anti-Trump text messages. Among messages sent between top FBI counterintelligence official Peter Strzok and senior FBI lawyer Lisa Page was a discussion of an “insurance policy” in the event Trump is elected and a “secret society” within the FBI and DOJ.
An informant has since told lawmakers that the secret society held at least one secret offsite meeting and consisted of top-level officials in the FBI and DOJ.
“I want to believe the path you threw out for consideration in Andy’s office – that there’s no way he gets elected – but I’m afraid we can’t take that risk,” Strzok wrote in a message to page on Aug. 15, 2016. “It’s like an insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before you’re 40.”
Some lawmakers believe that the “Andy” in the text messages is McCabe, Fox News reported.