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Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., slammed former FBI Director James Comey as “arrogant” in the wake of the release of a report by the Justice Department’s inspector general — and called on former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to testify on the matter before his panel.
“James Comey has done more damage to the FBI than anybody since J. Edgar Hoover,” Graham said Wednesday on “Hannity,” “and [Andrew] McCabe is in that category.”
Hoover — who served as the inaugural FBI director from President Calvin Coolidge’s administration through the early part of Richard Nixon’s — was accused of greatly abusing his power, creating enemies lists and harassing political dissenters. At the same time, Hoover was praised for expanding the crime-fighting concept of the FBI from the limits originally intended in 1924.
“Mr. Rosenstein, get ready to testify,” Graham later added. After then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ recusal, Rosenstein took over the supervision of Robert Mueller’s special counsel probe of possible links between the Trump campaign and Russia.
In addition, Graham criticized current FBI Director Christopher Wray, saying he has not shown any urgency to clean up the FBI’s reputation and investigate what went wrong among bureau brass at the building that now bears Hoover’s name.
“Christopher Wray: If you’re watching television, you’ve got a mountain to climb,” Graham said. “You’ve got to come to the Judiciary Committee and prove to us that you’re going to change the culture of the FBI.”
Wray, who previously served as ex-New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s attorney during the George Washington “Bridgegate” scandal as well as in the George W. Bush Justice Department, was named FBI director by President Trump after Comey’s firing.
Host Sean Hannity agreed it was troubling that Wray was not reacting urgently enough to the report.
Graham told Hannity that there are people at the FBI that must be fired and others imprisoned for their role in the FISA situation.
“The FBI and the Department of Justice took the law into their own hands,” he claimed. “They defrauded the FISA court. They trampled on the rights of Carter Page,” the South Carolina lawmaker said. “The day of reckoning is coming — it’s not here yet.”
“The reason they never briefed Donald Trump defensively about the threats coming from Russia was that they did not want to protect Trump, they wanted to destroy Trump,” he said.