U.S. Rep. James Comer, R-Ky., threatened FBI Director Christopher Wray on Tuesday with contempt of Congress for his agency’s refusing a subpoena to turn over an unclassified document that alleges a criminal scheme involving Joe Biden as vice president and a foreign adversary.
“Today, the FBI informed the committee that it will not provide the unclassified documents subpoenaed by the committee,” Comer said in a news release. “The FBI’s decision to stiff-arm Congress and hide this information from the American people is obstructionist and unacceptable.”
Comer said he scheduled a call with Wray for Wednesday to discuss the agency’s response.
“The Committee has been clear in its intent to protect Congressional oversight authorities and will now be taking steps to hold the FBI director in contempt of Congress for refusing to comply with a lawful subpoena,” he said. “Americans deserve the truth, and the Oversight Committee will continue to demand transparency from this nation’s chief law enforcement agency.”
In a TV interview earlier Tuesday, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., said "we have jurisdiction over the FBI, they seem to act like we do not," a transcript of the remarks to Fox News showed.
"I personally called Director Wray and told him to send the document, today is the deadline," McCarthy said. "Let me [say], Christopher Wray, right here, right now, I will move contempt charges against him. He can send the document. We have a right to look at that, Republicans and Democrats alike. If he does not follow through with the law, we will move contempt charges against Christopher Wray. They are not above the law."
A federal whistleblower alleges the document, an FD-1023 form, contains evidence of an arrangement between Biden, when he was vice president, and a foreign adversary involving an exchange of money for policy decisions.
The subpoena was issued May 3 and gave the FBI until May 10 to respond. In it, Comer requested “all FD-1023 forms, including within any open, closed, or restricted access case files, created or modified in June 2020, containing the term ‘Biden,’ including all accompanying attachments and documents to those FD-1023 forms.”
In a May 24 letter to Wray, Comer narrowed the subpoena request to FD-1023 forms with the name “Biden” on it to “June 30, 2020,” and “five million” and gave the FBI six more days to comply.
“These terms relate to the date on the FD-1023 form and its reference to the amount of money the foreign national allegedly paid to receive the desired policy outcome,” Comer wrote. “… Despite the FBI’s unreasonable delay, the committee will allow FBI six more days to produce the FD-1023 form. To the extent there are numerous documents referencing ‘Biden’ and ‘five million’ dollar payments, please let us know promptly.”
The new deadline ended Tuesday, prompting Comer’s latest statement.
In an email to Newsmax, the FBI said it wrote a letter to Comer on Tuesday stating it is "committed to providing access to information responsive to the committee’s subpoena in a format and setting that maintains confidentiality and protects important security interests and the integrity of FBI investigations."
“The FBI remains committed to cooperating with the committee in good faith,” the FBI said."... Last week, Director Wray scheduled a telephone call for [Wednesday] to provide additional details of the FBI’s extraordinary accommodation to satisfy the subpoena request. Any discussion of escalation under these circumstances is unnecessary.”
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