Jacquelyn Martin / AP

FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe plans to retire in March "when he becomes fully eligible for pension benefits" according to a new report from the Washington Post.

Why it matters: McCabe is reportedly going to retire early because of the intense criticism he's received from Republicans, particularly as Special Counsel Bob Mueller's investigation has widened. And that scrutiny picked up after Trump abruptly fired former FBI Director James Comey because conservatives and Republicans wanted him to answer for Comey's decisions.

"The pressure on McCabe has only intensified," WashPost notes. The House Intelligence Committee recently questioned him for eight hours and two days after he went to Congress where he answered nine hours' worth of questions from the House Judiciary and Oversight committees.

Republicans are particularly mad at the FBI over their almost-relationship with the author behind the Trump-Russia dossier. After the 2016 election, the FBI reportedly offered to pay "to keep pursuing leads and information, but the agreement was never finalized," per WashPost.

Earlier today, from Axios AM: President Trump's public lashing of the FBI, and the criticism by normally supportive Republican members of Congress, have damaged bureau morale, the N.Y. Times reports:

Director Christopher Wray, trying to move past his predecessor's era, "has kept a low profile, making sure his anodyne speeches inside and outside the F.B.I. do not inflame the White House."

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Updated 7 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7 p.m. ET: 12,859,834 — Total deaths: 567,123 — Total recoveries — 7,062,085Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 7 p.m. ET: 3,297,501— Total deaths: 135,155 — Total recoveries: 1,006,326 — Total tested: 40,282,176Map.
  3. States: Florida smashes single-day record for new coronavirus cases with over 15,000 — NYC reports zero coronavirus deaths for first time since pandemic hit.
  4. Public health: Ex-FDA chief projects "apex" of South's coronavirus curve in 2-3 weeks — Coronavirus testing czar: Lockdowns in hotspots "should be on the table"
  5. Education: Betsy DeVos says schools that don't reopen shouldn't get federal funds — Pelosi accuses Trump of "messing with the health of our children."

Scoop: How the White House is trying to trap leakers

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President Trump's chief of staff, Mark Meadows, has told several White House staffers he's fed specific nuggets of information to suspected leakers to see if they pass them on to reporters — a trap that would confirm his suspicions. "Meadows told me he was doing that," said one former White House official. "I don't know if it ever worked."

Why it matters: This hunt for leakers has put some White House staffers on edge, with multiple officials telling Axios that Meadows has been unusually vocal about his tactics. So far, he's caught only one person, for a minor leak.

11 GOP congressional nominees support QAnon conspiracy

Lauren Boebert posing in her restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, on April 24. Photo: Emily Kask/AFP

At least 11 Republican congressional nominees have publicly supported or defended the QAnon conspiracy theory movement or some of its tenets — and more aligned with the movement may still find a way onto ballots this year.

Why it matters: Their progress shows how a fringe online forum built on unsubstantiated claims and flagged as a threat by the FBI is seeking a foothold in the U.S. political mainstream.