Attorney General Fires Former No. 2 FBI Official McCabe
Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe has been fired -- effective immediately, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement released late Friday.
McCabe, at one time the No. 2 official in the agency whom President Donald Trump has publicly criticized for alleged political bias and reportedly wanted fired, stepped down from the agency Jan. 30. He had planned to retire on Sunday -- his birthday -- with full benefits. However, now that he has been fired, some or all of his pension could be at risk.
McCabe was thrust into controversy just days before the 2016 presidential election when it was disclosed that his wife, Jill McCabe, a Democratic candidate for a seat in the Virginia Senate in 2015, had taken hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign donations from a political action committee controlled by a friend of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton — then-Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe.
Trump, then the Republican presidential nominee, used the disclosure to question the FBI’s impartiality in investigating Clinton’s use of a private email server, before it declined to bring criminal charges against her.
At the time, the FBI said that McCabe had consulted bureau ethics officials and that he and FBI lawyers "implemented a system of recusal from all FBI investigative matters involving Virginia politics."
After Trump abruptly fired then-FBI Director James Comey over the Russia investigation in May 2017, Attorney General Sessions elevated McCabe to acting director.
McCabe responded to the news late Friday, saying he believed he was being "singled out" for things he witnessed when Trump fired Comey.
McCabe served 22 years with the FBI.
Engineer on Florida Bridge Project Reported Cracks Days before Collapse
Officials in the state of Florida say the lead engineer responsible for a pedestrian bridge that collapsed this week left a voicemail for a state official two days before the accident warning of “some cracking.”
The Florida Department of Transportation said the voicemail was not retrieved until Friday because the state transportation official to whom the message was directed was out of the office on assignment.
According to a transcript of the call released by the department, the engineer with the private contractor FIGG Bridge Group said he did not consider the cracking on the bridge a safety issue.
“Obviously the cracking is not good,” he said, adding that something would have to be done to repair it.
Earlier Friday, authorities in Florida said the death toll from the collapsed pedestrian bridge on the campus of Florida International University had risen to six people. They said the toll is expected to climb as searchers dig through rubble, where several cars remain buried.
Local Police Department acknowledged a homicide investigation is under way but described as premature reports that criminal charges are imminent.
At least nine people were injured when the bridge.