Republican Chairman of the House Oversight Committee James Comer announced Monday that lawmakers will convene contempt hearings for FBI Director Christopher Wray later this week.
Speaking to reporters in a Capitol Hill press conference, the Kentucky representative charged the FBI with violating a congressional subpoena over an unclassified document. The FBI record purportedly implicates President Joe Biden in a $5 million bribery scheme with a “foreign national” from Biden’s time in the Obama administration.
“Anything short of producing these documents to the House Oversight Committee is not in compliance with the subpoena,” Comer warned last week.
The House Oversight chairman viewed the document in a secure SCIF at the Capitol on Monday after agency officials initially refused and demanded lawmakers travel to the FBI headquarters on Pennsylvania Avenue.
“FBI officials confirmed that the unclassified FBI generated record has not been disproven and is currently being used in an ongoing investigation,” Comer said Monday. “At the briefing, the FBI again refused to hand over the unclassified record to the custody of the House Oversight Committee, and we will now initiate contempt of Congress hearings this Thursday.”
Comer noted the document “appears” to be used in an ongoing FBI probe “which I assume is in Delaware” and promised Congress’ own investigation is only in the “beginning” stages. Agency claims that the document can’t be released, however, are likely to be met with skepticism considering the FBI hired Igor Danchenko as an undercover informant to keep the lies around the Trump-Russia investigation quiet.
Republicans have threatened to hold Wray in contempt of Congress for weeks over the FBI chief’s refusal to hand over the requested record. Comer submitted a subpoena for the document with Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, a primary watchdog of the Justice Department in the upper chamber.
“We believe the FBI possesses an unclassified internal document that includes very serious and detailed allegations implicating the current President of the United States,” Grassley wrote in May. “What we don’t know is what, if anything, the FBI has done to verify these claims or investigate further. The FBI’s recent history of botching politically charged investigations demands close congressional oversight.”
While the FBI director faces contempt charges over the document implicating the president in a bribery scheme, the agency continues to stonewall congressional requests on a pair of pipe bombs found at the DNC and RNC headquarters in Washington, D.C. on Jan. 6, 2021.
House Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan of Ohio has demanded an FBI briefing on the pipe bomb investigation multiple times. According to Kyle Seraphin, a former FBI agent who worked on the case, the agency previously tracked down the suspect’s car but has not identified the culprit. The FBI also found both bombs to be inoperable.