FBI Director Chris Wray seemed to imply there was a connection between an upcoming inspector general’s report and the sudden departure of Deputy Director Andrew McCabe in a written message to FBI employees last night. McCabe announced on Monday that he would be stepping down from his post more than a month before his previously-announced retirement date in March.
Wray implied that he had seen aspects of the upcoming IG’s report relating to the way the FBI handled the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private-email-server use while she was Secretary of State. “It would be inappropriate for me to comment on specific aspects of the IG’s review right now,” Wray said. “But I can assure you that I remain staunchly committed to doing this job, in every respect, ‘by the book.’ I will not be swayed by political or other pressure in my decision making.”
In the very next paragraph Wray wrote that McCabe had announced his departure, implying there was connection between the two. McCabe’s announcement fueled deep speculation that he was forced out in some way by President Trump, who has criticized McCabe heavily in recent months. But several sources within the FBI say that was not the case. Those sources say McCabe made his decision after the meeting with Wray.
McCabe wrote his own message to FBI employees imploring them to maintain the culture of integrity prevalent at the FBI. “It is has been my privilege and honor to work with you all for the past 21 years. Please always remember that the key to those successes is an unflagging focus on integrity. You are the greatest workforce on earth because you speak up, you tell the truth and you do the right thing,” McCabe wrote.