FBI Director Wray Denies Protecting Bidens in Fiery Exchange With Rep. Gaetz

FBI Director Christopher Wray vehemently denied that he has been working to protect the Biden family during a contentious exchange Wednesday with Congressman Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.). Wray answered questions this morning before a House Judiciary Committee hearing examining “the politicization of the nation’s preeminent law enforcement agency under the direction of FBI Director Christopher Wray and Attorney General Merrick Garland.”

Gaetz began his line of questioning by reading the now infamous “shake-down” WhatsApp message sent by Hunter Biden to Henry Zhao, a Chinese businessman who is believed to be connected with the Chinese Communist Party.

“I’m sitting here with my father and we would like to understand why the commitment has not been fulfilled. You will regret not following my direction. I am waiting for the call with my father,” Hunter allegedly wrote on July 30, 2017.

“Sounds like a shake-down, doesn’t it director?” asked Gaetz.

Wray refused to comment on the incriminating text message.

“You seem deeply uncurious about it— almost suspiciously uncurious. Are you protecting the Bidens?” Gaetz demanded.

“Absolutely not!” Wray responded angrily. “The FBI has no interest …”

“You won’t answer the question about whether that’s a shakedown,” the Florida congressman interjected. “And everyone know why you won’t answer because to the millions of people seeing this, they know it is, and your inability to acknowledge that is deeply revealing.”

Two Internal Revenue Service (IRS) whistleblowers have alleged that the Department of Justice and the FBI interfered in the Hunter Biden investigation by blocking search warrants and concealing evidence regarding an alleged bribery scheme from investigators.

According to whistleblower Gary Shapley’s testimony, FBI headquarters on December 20, 2020, notified Secret Service headquarters, and the Biden transition team, about the IRS investigators’ plan to interview Hunter Biden.

“This essentially tipped off a group of people very close to President Biden and Hunter Biden and gave this group an opportunity to obstruct the approach on the witnesses …  and ultimately, we got one guy out of 12 that talked,” the IRS whistleblower testified.

Gaetz then moved from the “uncurious” to the “downright nosy” behavior of the FBI, hammering Wray over alleged Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) abuses. The Florida Republican has been a leader in the push for Congress to axe Section 702 of FISA, which concerns surveillance of non-U.S. citizens overseas, and queries of U.S. citizens when they are flagged in such probes.

The FBI reportedly used Section 702 to run queries on American citizens, including January 6 protesters and BLM activists, 204,000 times in 2022 alone.  Congress will decide whether to reauthorize Section 702 at the end of the year, and top Republicans have said they will not do so without major changes.

Gaetz asked the director if he knew how many illegal queries had been conducted under his leadership. Wray acknowledged that there have been reports that have come out “with different numbers about compliance incidents.”

“More than a million?” Gaetz pressed. “Because that’s what the inspector general [Michael Horowitz] said. The inspector general said that in the 3.4 million of these queries, more than a million were in error.”

Gaetz asked Wray if he agreed with Horowitz on those astounding numbers.

Grimacing, Wray questioned Gaetz’s facts, saying “I’m not sure that was a correct characterization of the inspector general’s findings on that.”

“Oh, well, the internet will remind you of that,” Gaetz shot back.

Indeed, a quick internet search confirms that the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) stated in a December 2022 report that FBI personnel conducted nearly 3.4 million queries of U.S. persons in 2021, and many of those searches were made in error.

During a House Judiciary Committee hearing on April 27, Department of Justice Inspector General Horowitz confirmed that more than 1 million of those secret database searches were conducted erroneously, an error rate of about 30 percent.

Wray, however insisted that he didn’t know the number of illegal queries “as I sit here right now.”

“Seems like a number you should know!” Gaetz cried. “How many times the FBI’s breaking the law under your watch, especially if it’s like over a million!”

Gaetz went on question Wray’s veracity when he denied in earlier testimony before a Senate committee that the the FISA court was in any way involved in the Bureau’s January 6 investigation.

“I don’t think FISA is remotely implicated in our investigation,” Wray had told Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah) at the time.

Gaetz displayed a court document showing that there were thirteen illegal queries of individuals suspected of being involved in the January 6 protest at the Capital. He asked the FBI director if he perjured himself when he testified that “FISA isn’t remotely implicated” or just didn’t know.

“I certainly didn’t perjure myself at the time that I testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee, I didn’t have that piece of information,” Wray stated.

Gaetz pointed out that the document he shared  was a court order that hadn’t yet been released when Wray testified before the Senate.

“The FBI is broken so bad that people can go and engage in queries that when you come before the Congress to answer questions, you’re, like, you’re blissfully ignorant,” Gaetz cried. “You’re blissfully ignorant as to the unlawful queries, you’re blissfully ignorant as to the Biden shake-down regime.”

The congressman also accused the Bureau of  “using the FISA process as their creepy personal snoop machine.”

“People were looking themselves up, looking their ex-lovers up, using the FISA process as their creepy personal snoop machine,” Gaetz charged.

Wray admitted that there have been instances of “disciplinary action” for improper use of the warrantless search process.

“You preside over the FBI that has the lowest level of trust in the FBI’s history!” Gaetz exclaimed.

“People trusted the FBI more when J. Edgar Hoover was running the place than when you are,” Gaetz added. “And the reason is because you don’t give straight answers, you give answers that later a court deems aren’t true, and then at the end of the day you won’t criticize an obvious shakedown when it’s directly in front of us, and it appears as though you’re whitewashing the conduct of corrupt people.”

Taking umbrage, Wray replied: “respectfully congressman, in your home state of Florida, the number of people applying to come work for us and devote their lives working for us is up over 100% since I started,.”

“We’re deeply proud of them, and they deserve better than you! Gaetz fired back.




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About Debra Heine

Debra Heine is a conservative Catholic mom of six and longtime political pundit. She has written for several conservative news websites over the years, including Breitbart and PJ Media.

Photo: WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 12: FBI Director Christopher Wray testifies during a House Judiciary Committee hearing about oversight of the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Capitol Hill July 12, 2023 in Washington, DC. Conservative House Republicans claim that the FBI and other federal law enforcement agencies have been "weaponized" against conservatives, including former U.S. President Donald Trump and his allies. Wray defended the FBI workforce, emphasizing that the agency protects Americans every day "from a staggering array of threats." (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Notable Replies

  1. Not being willing to characterize the whatsapp message as sounding like a shake-down speaks volumes. Perhaps Wray thought Hunter was upset about his Egg Drop soup being left off the order?

  2. Wray is a complete disaster. He knows that this administration will do nothing to him. He might even have some compromising info on some of the politicians, which might be another reason he won’t talk.

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