FBI Director Wray Defends Agency Before Lawmakers

Here's What Gowdy Plans to Ask FBI Director Wray at Today's Hearing

Here's What Gowdy Plans to Ask FBI Director Wray at Today's Hearing

WASHINGTON DC, USA - FBI Director Christopher Wray defended his agency Thursday, December 7, against President Donald Trump's criticisms, amid a mounting Republican push aimed at discrediting the probe into alleged collusion between the US leader's campaign and Russian Federation in last year's election.

Trump also retweeted reports that a top FBI investigator on special counsel Robert Mueller's team was removed from the investigation for exchanging text messages that could be construed as anti-Trump. "We're accustomed to that", he said. They repeatedly gave Wray an opportunity to dispute the president's portrayal of the Federal Bureau of Investigation as an agency "in tatters".

Mr Wray conceded that agents do make mistakes and said there are processes in place to hold them accountable. "The FBI that I see is tens of thousands of courageous men and women who are working as hard as they can to keep people that they will never know safe from harm".

He was referencing when special counsel Robert Mueller removed one of the FBI's top Russian counterintelligence experts from his team of investigators after an internal investigation found messages he sent that could be interpreted as showing political bias for Hillary Clinton and against Trump, according to USA officials briefed on the matter.

Trump loves the "courageous" agency when it's digging into Hillary Clinton's activities, but he blasts agents when they might be coming for him, Tapper pointed out Thursday.

"Even the appearance of impropriety will devastate the FBI's reputation".

Wray spoke during a House Judiciary Committee oversight hearing.

"Your responsibility is not only to defend the bureau but to push back against the president when he is so clearly wrong, both on the facts and as a matter of principle", Nadler told Wray. Since he was sworn in on August 2, the USA has experienced two of the deadliest shootings in its modern history and an attack on a bike path in Manhattan that officials have said was terrorism.

He responded to Trump's weekend tweet during a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Thursday. With his bosses, Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Sessions' deputy, Rod Rosenstein, staying publicly silent, it fell to Wray to defend the agency.

But FBI directors traditionally have been low key and stoic - with Mr Wray's predecessor James Comey a notable exception.

At a Thursday hearing with FBI Director Christopher Wray, Goodlatte says, "It is absolutely unacceptable for FBI employees to permit their own political predilections to contaminate any investigation".

Republicans repeatedly pressed him on reports that Mr Strzok tweaked the language of the FBI's finding from "grossly negligent" - the standard laid out in the relevant statute - to "extremely careless", which was the language that Mr Comey ultimately used in discussing the Clinton case with the public.