Sunday, July 30, 2023

FBI turns over docs on Catholic ‘extremism’ to Judiciary Committee amid contempt threat

FBI turns over docs on Catholic 'extremism' to Judiciary Committee amid  contempt threat – DNyuz

The FBI furnished key files to the House Judiciary Committee Tuesday regarding its work to combat domestic Catholic extremism and an uptick in threats against school administrators.

Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-Oh.) subpoenaed the files and threatened to hold FBI director Christopher Wray in contempt if he refused to hand them over. 

Jordan had given Wray a July 25 deadline.

Now that the bureau has handed over the batch of records, Jordan’s team plans to review the documents and is keeping its options open.

The documents in question reveal details about a Justice Department order for the FBI to probe an alleged “disturbing spike” in threats against school officials amid a wave of conservative backlash in 2021.

They also pertain to a since withdrawn FBI memo that appeared to connect “radical-traditionalist Catholics” with domestic terrorism.

That memo suggested that Catholics opposed to abortion have links to extremist ideologies.

Both matters have become a rallying cry for Republicans who have accused the bureau of being biased against conservatives.

Jordan also leads the House Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government.

In a letter to Jordan attached to the documents, Acting Assistant Director Christopher Dunham urged the chairman to refrain from disseminating the files.

“The production of this information to the Committee does not waive any applicable privileges or other protections,” the bureau stressed in its letter to Jordan, obtained by the Washington Examiner.

“We respectfully request that the Committee not disseminate or otherwise disclose these documents without prior consultation with the FBI.”

Top Republicans in Congress have battled with the bureau over documents in the past.

Last week, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Ia.) released a FD 1023 informant form outlining bribery allegations against the Biden family that Republicans fought against the bureau for weeks to show their members.

For months, both Jordan and the bureau had been ensnared in a back-and-forth over the FBI files about school protests and Catholic extremism, sending him a slew of often redacted paperwork.

This long-winded process prompted Jordan’s contempt threat.

The FBI underscored the scope of the records sought by Jordan and attached a list of some 40 instances over the past year in which the bureau corresponded with the panel.

“Since January, the FBI has received fourteen letters and three subpoenas from this Committee, spanning a multitude of subject matters and requesting documents and testimony from nearly 30 current FBI officials,” Dunham said in the letter.