Jim Jordan Threatens Subpoena of Cold-Footed Ex-FBI Agent
(TheRedWire.com) – Ahead of the November 2022 midterm elections, House Republicans informed the FBI and Department of Justice (DOJ) they would use the power of Congress if they flipped the House to investigate them. On November 4, Republicans on the Judiciary Committee released a report stating whistleblowers accused the agencies’ leaders of creating a culture of “unaccountability, manipulation, and abuse.” Now, the GOP appears intent on using its upcoming slim majority to follow through on its promise.
On Thursday, December 1, Fox News reported incoming House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) threatened a subpoena to force a former FBI official to testify to the committee. Former executive assistant director of the FBI’s National Security Branch Jill Sandborn faces accusations from whistleblowers that she improperly ordered federal agents to classify cases as violent domestic extremism.
Former Senior FBI Official Backs Out of Scheduled Transcribed Interview
In the 1,050-page report titled “FBI Whistleblowers: What Their Disclosures Indicate About the Politicization of the FBI And Justice Department,” Republicans said whistleblowers informed them of political bias by senior leaders of the FBI and accused them of misusing their federal law enforcement powers.
Sanborn had agreed to meet with Jordan and committee Republicans on Friday, December 2, but backed out of the meeting. She voluntarily offered a transcribed interview regarding the FBI’s focus on domestic violence and extremism. Attorney Carter Burwell notified the committee earlier in the week and recommended Sandborn sit with them in early 2023.
The news didn’t sit well with Jordan. In a letter, he said her decision left them with few choices, and he noted they would consider forcing her testimony through subpoena powers early in the year after the GOP took over the House on January 3. The incoming chairman stated she reneged on her commitment to talk after her attorney received counsel from the DOJ and current Judiciary Committee Democrats. He noted she did not need their permission to meet with them voluntarily.
— House Judiciary GOP (@JudiciaryGOP) December 2, 2022
Jordan noted the Justice Department and FBI would likely not approve of her testimony. He said her voluntary appearance was her decision and hers alone. The Congressman alleged bias and politicization within the FBI and stated it was a serious issue.
Attorney Provides Reason for Backing Out
Burwell explained that conducting Sanborn’s testimony in late January or early February would be better. He said the DOJ objected to the transcribed interview, as did the current Judiciary Chairman, Jerry Nadler (D-NY). He emphasized the discussion would be more productive after Republicans took over and stated he looked forward to working with them.
Sanborn’s attorney added that Sanborn remained obligated to coordinate any interview with the DOJ and FBI and that the Justice Department objected to it without an agency attorney present. Regarding the whistleblower allegations leveled against her, Burwell said the former FBI official did not emphasize or inflate the domestic violent extremism threat. She has vehemently denied the accusations.
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