Federal Bureau of Investigation chief defends agency after Trump says it's in "tatters"

DiGenova: Comey

Trump tweeted last weekend the FBI's reputation is "in Tatters _ worst in History!" and urged Wray to "clean house". A pair of Democratic members - Reps.

"My experience has been that our reputation is quite good", Wray said, responding to questioning from Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas. "What I can tell you is tens of thousands of agents and analysts and staff working their tails off to keep Americans safe from the next terrorist attack, gang violence, child predators, spies from Russia, China, North Korea, and Iran".

"The FBI that I see is tens of thousands of courageous men and women", he continued.

"Why are the same people that mishandled and provided bias to the Hillary Clinton investigation, why are they still in this administration?" asked Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.).

Trump seized on the reports about Strzok in his weekend anti-FBI, anti-Comey tweetstorm.

The CNN host played a clip of Trump praising former FBI director James Comey over the bureau's investigation into Hillary Clinton's private email server.

Strzok was quietly removed from the Mueller probe after text messages expressing anti-Trump bias were discovered. Trump tweeted Sunday morning, December 3.

"The FBI I see is reflected in folks like the new class of agents I swore in in Quantico two days ago", he said. "People like the hostage rescue team and SWAT teams that we send out into all sorts of danger with nearly no notice". "We've seen the attacks on legislative oversight, intelligence agencies, the judiciary, journalists".

Meanwhile, emails from deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe say the Clinton email probe was referred to as "special" and handled with a "small team". "Now do we make mistakes? We hope to hear from you today about an action plan for making sure this never happens again". Just like everybody who is human makes mistakes.

Other topics on the agenda with lawmakers Thursday include Wray's independence from the president and the administration, the renewal of a law the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other agencies in the intelligence community have said is critical to fighting terrorism and a recent Federal Bureau of Investigation report about so-called black identity extremists that has been cause for concern from several African-American members of the committee. "And when that independent fact finding is complete, we will hold our folks accountable if that's appropriate".

Mueller, who led the FBI for 12 years, was appointed head of the special counsel probe by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein after Trump fired then-FBI Director James Comey in May as he was leading the Russian Federation probe. "We're accustomed to that", he said.

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