Tags: Donald Trump | James Comey | Michael Flynn | Christopher Wray | fbi | bowdich | pistole

What Happens If Wray Is Out as FBI Director?

christopher wray in a white shirt and black suit is shown
FBI Director Christopher Wray (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

By Monday, 11 May 2020 01:25 PM Current | Bio | Archive

The decision last week by the Justice Department not to prosecute retired Gen. Michael Flynn has opened fresh speculation that Christoper Wray may be out as director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Within twenty-four hours of a comment by President Trump suggesting Wray’s days were numbered at the FBI, speculation focused on three prospective successors.

In an interview with Fox News last Thursday, the President was asked about Wray’s role in the investigation of Russian involvement in the U.S. election that led to Flynn’s resignation from his position as White House national security advisor and his three-years-long legal ordeal.

“It’s disappointing,” replied Trump, “Let’s see what happens with him. The jury is still out.”

Should Wray leave three years after he was appointed by Trump to succeed fired FBI Director James Comey, there are three prospective names being floated for the director’s position:

  • David L. Bowdich, currently number two to Wray at the FBI, is a lifelong lawman.  A former Albuquerque, New Mexico, police officer, Bowdich went on to serve as an FBI agent on the West Coast, assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office, and then associate deputy director of the FBI. He assumed his current position as deputy director of the FBI in 2018. Bowdich, 51, would almost be guaranteed confirmation, but he has one major stumbling block with Trump: his first two major promotions came under Comey, a sworn enemy of the president.
  • John Pistole, a former FBI agent and now president of Anderson University in Indiana, was a runner-up to Wray for the directorship in 2017 and reportedly had the backing of fellow Hoosier Mike Pence. Pistole, 63, also served as head of the Transportation Security Administration under President Obama and is a past deputy director of the FBI.
  • Jeff Jensen, 47, a swashbuckling FBI agent for ten years and now U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Missouri, got national attention for orchestrating the decision not to prosecute Flynn. Were he to be appointed to the directorship or almost any position requiring Senate approval, an all-out confirmation war would be a foregone conclusion.

Most sources in the law enforcement community expect that, unwilling to risk another confirmation fight in the Senate, the President will let Wray stay where he is through the election. 

As if to encourage the president to keep Wray on, Brian O’Hare, president of the FBI Agents Association, issued a statement Friday hailing the director because he “continues to lead through unprecedented challenges with a steady hand.”

Attorney General William Barr also weighed in behind Wray, calling him “a great partner to me in our effort to restore the American people’s confidence in both the Department of Justice and the FBI.”

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.

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The decision last week by the Justice Department not to prosecute retired Gen. Michael Flynn has opened fresh speculation that Christoper Wray may be out as director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Within twenty-four hours of a comment by President Trump...
Christopher Wray, fbi, bowdich, pistole, jensen, barr
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2020-25-11
Monday, 11 May 2020 01:25 PM
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