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Long Report from the House Judiciary Gop Sets the Stage for FBI and Doj Investigations
A lengthy staff report on alleged politicization and anti-conservative bias in the FBI and Department of Justice (DOJ) was released by Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee on Friday. If the GOP takes back control of the House in next week’s midterm elections, the report will serve as a roadmap for additional investigations into the agencies.
Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), the ranking member on the committee who is likely to chair the panel next year if Republicans win a majority, declared in a tweet that “the Federal Bureau of Investigation, under the stewardship of Director Christopher Wray and Attorney General Merrick Garland, is broken” alongside the report.
Republicans have already written letters to the agencies, and the majority of the 1,050-page report—1,000 pages—is made up of copies of those letters. One five-page letter, in several copies, was sent to each of the 93 U.S. attorneys, the FBI director, and the acting assistant attorney general.
However, the report alludes to their need for further inquiries and, on its fifth page, notifies FBI and DOJ personnel that they have the right to talk with Congressmen. The study stated that “there is probably much more to be revealed in the months to come.”
— Laurence Tribe (@tribelaw) November 5, 2022
Requests for comment from the FBI and DOJ did not immediately receive a response. The report details a long list of grievances against the FBI and DOJ’s handling of a number of issues, including the alleged manipulation of statistics on domestic violent extremism, communication with social media companies about false information, alleged retaliation against agents who attended rallies outside the Capitol on January 6, 2021, alleged investigations into parents in cases involving school boards, and the FBI’s seizure of Rep. Scott Perry’s (R-Pa.) cellphone in connection with indictments
It also provides a fair assessment of former president Trump’s assistance with the FBI during its inquiry into his handling of secret documents at Mar-a-Lago. Despite the fact that it took multiple follow-up trips, including one with a warrant, to secure the more than 10,000 government papers kept there, it was claimed that his initial return of some documents was “over-inclusive.”
It also recalls the long-standing resentment of Republicans and Trump about Carter Page’s surveillance by the Justice Department in connection with worries about Russian interference in the 2016 race. Two of the four warrants were eventually found illegal by the Justice Department.
Scoop: Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee will release a 1,000-page document on Friday detailing allegations of politicization of the FBI & DOJ Justice Department under the Biden administration https://t.co/PiGLDDNrtx
— Alayna Treene (@alaynatreene) November 4, 2022
The report includes quotes from anonymous whistleblowers who claim the FBI hierarchy is “rotted at its core,” upholds a “systemic culture of unaccountability,” and is full of “rampant corruption, manipulation, and abuse.” Jordan has relied heavily on insiders at the FBI to make complaints against the organization.
Jordan has been criticizing the FBI for politicizing its response to domestic terrorism for months. Citing a whistleblower, Jordan claims that certain cases have been incorrectly classified as domestic terrorism cases. The FBI has categorically denied that, highlighting the alarming rise in extremism across the board and issuing a warning about an increase in those driven by white supremacist ideologies.
Jordan has also been particularly interested in a memo that Garland signed in October of last year, which noted a “disturbing spike in harassment, intimidation, and threats of violence against school administrators, board members, teachers, and staff” amid broader discussions about COVID-19 policies and how issues like race and gender are handled at schools.
The memo generally urged coordination and instructed the FBI to call meetings with local law enforcement to discuss how to handle threats of violence over the next 30 days. In the end, there wasn’t much payoff, especially considering how quickly the GOP reacted.
Jordan claims to have written over 100 letters on the issue. Here are the $1.6 billion jackpot winning numbers for Powerball. Observe life: a Trump event takes place in Pennsylvania Future probes against the DOJ have been approved by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), who would likely become Speaker if Republicans win a majority.
McCarthy instructed Garland to “preserve your documents and clear your calendar” after the Mar-a-Lago search, indicating that Republicans would utilize subpoena power to compel evidence and testimony in response to worries about politicization.
Before any official change in the House’s power structure, one significant event in the GOP investigations into alleged politicization will occur next month. On December 2, former FBI employee Jill Sanborn is scheduled to participate in a recorded interview with the panel’s Republicans.
She was questioned by Jordan and Rep. Mike Johnson (R-La.) over allegations made by a whistleblower that the FBI forced agents to incorrectly designate certain instances as “domestic violent extremism.” Monday, the day before Election Day, Jordan is slated to join Trump at a rally in Ohio.