The media is blaming President Donald Trump for Andrew McCabe’s resignation from deputy director of the FBI, rather than a forthcoming Inspector General report.
The FBI was caught off guard by McCabe’s resignation, and the media speculated as to why he decided to step down several months before his planned retirement.
The blame was almost immediately put on President Trump and his penchant for critiquing the FBI, despite the fact that several outlets claimed McCabe was forced out by FBI Director Christopher Wray over the aforementioned IG report. The report allegedly questions how the FBI, and McCabe in particular, handled investigations pertaining to the 2016 presidential election. (RELATED: McCabe Forced Out Over Role In 2016 Election Investigations)
According to a study by the Media Research Center, the ABC, CBS and NBC evening news shows blamed Trump six times more than they blamed the IG report.
Each network lead their evening shows with the McCabe news and, in total, gave it nine minutes and 48 seconds of coverage. Six minutes and 28 seconds of that time was spent blaming Trump, while just one minute and 6 minutes was dedicated to the potential role of the IG report.
ABC’s “World News Tonight” had the biggest disparity in coverage, spending over three and a half minutes on Trump’s role and just 19 seconds on the IG report. Senior Justice Correspondent Pierre Thomas didn’t even mention the report until anchor David Muir asked him about it.
“Sources are telling us tonight, McCabe was getting indications that an upcoming Inspector General report dealing with both the Hillary Clinton probe and Russia was likely going to be rough on him,” Thomas explained. “He decided to leave so as not to be a distraction.”
Meanwhile, White House Correspondent Cecilia Vega floated the idea that Trump “pressuring his top law enforcement officials out of the job” could amount to obstruction.