On Monday, Ohio Republican and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan suggested that he would find FBI Director Christopher Wray in contempt of Congress. Two subpoenas were filed to the FBI earlier this year, and Jordan claims that they have not been adequately responded to.
Jordan wrote to Wray to advise him that the Committee would “pursue action,” including as content of Congress procedures, to ensure compliance with these subpoenas if the FBI does not dramatically improve its compliance.
In the letter, Jordan gave the FBI until July 25 at noon to turn over the requested materials or face action from the committee.
The letter was sent after the chairman said the committee had made significant concessions, repeatedly reached out to the FBI over several months, and tried to negotiate and engage with the agency in good faith.
Following a memo from Attorney General Merrick Garland, who expressed concern over a disturbing rise in harassment, intimidation, and threats of violence against school administrators, board members, teachers, and staff, subpoenas were issued to Wray, Garland, and Education Secretary Miguel Cardona in February.
Jordan has expressed concern that this memo threatens the freedom of speech. His letter from Monday implied that the FBI has been investigating parents who attend school board meetings to voice their opinions.
Jordan said that the FBI’s voluntary cooperation fell short of his expectations. He revealed that the FBI had sent in only four blacked-out pages of papers pertaining to the school board before the March 1 deadline. According to Jordan, the committee accommodated the FBI by agreeing to take documents as needed.
Concerning allegations of anti-Catholic bias at the FBI, Jordan filed a second subpoena to Wray in April. The document came from the field office in Richmond, Virginia, and it discussed the possible ties between white nationalists and “Radical Traditionalist Catholics.” The memorandum has been rescinded at this time.
While testifying before Jordan’s committee last week, Wray was accused of politicization at the FBI by Republicans.
Rep. James Comer has been pushing to get Wray charged with contempt of Congress. Comer hopes to force the government to disclose a document containing bribery allegations by then-Vice President Joe Biden.
The White House has refuted these claims.
Comer postponed the vote after the FBI agreed to provide committee members access on the eve of the vote.