August 02, 2017

Van Hollen Statement in Support of Nomination of Christopher Wray to be FBI Director

U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen submitted the following statement to the Congressional record in support ofthe nomination of Christopher Wray to be Director of the FBI:

"Mr. President, I rise to voice my support for Christopher Wray's nomination to become the next Director of the FBI. After meeting with Mr. Wray and reviewing his record, I believe he possesses the independence and integrity necessary to lead the Bureau through this tumultuous period.

"This vacancy arose because President Trump abruptly fired then-Director James Comey. The circumstances surrounding Mr. Comey's firing are alarming and suspicious. Mr. Comey testified under oath that the President not only demanded his personal loyalty on numerous occasions but also intimated that Mr. Comey should stop investigating, then-National Security Advisor Michael Flynn and Russian interference in the 2016 elections.

"Mr. Wray will face numerous challenges as the new Director of the FBI. He will have to deal with a President who has shown a complete disregard for traditional protocols designed to ensure the agency's independence. During our meeting, Mr. Wray assured me that he would remain independent from the President and would reject any attempts by President Trump to inappropriately intervene in the work of the FBI.

"During our meeting, I also impressed upon Mr. Wray the importance of consolidating the FBI's staff in one building. The FBI has long outgrown its current space and the building is deteriorating, which compromises the agency's mission. I look forward to working with him to give FBI personnel the facilities they deserve.

"As Mr. Wray takes his position, he will need to work immediately to affirm the FBI's independence and restore the confidence of an agency shaken by the President's inappropriate conduct with respect to Mr. Comey and other matters. This Congress must conduct vigorous oversight to ensure that Mr. Wray maintains the high standard of integrity that he has promised and to respond to any attempts by the President or his political advisors to exert undue influence at the FBI. I pledge to do everything I can to support his important mission and the vital work of the FBI."