ACLU Statement on Nomination of New FBI Director

June 7, 2017 12:15 pm

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WASHINGTON — President Trump announced today that he is nominating former federal prosecutor Christopher Wray to be the next FBI director.

Faiz Shakir, American Civil Liberties Union national political director, had the following reaction:

“Americans are rightly alarmed by reports that President Trump attempted to influence an FBI investigation into his campaign — and by his subsequent decision to fire the man running that investigation — because the United States is a nation of laws, and no individual, including the president, is above those laws. Given the White House’s repeated attempts to influence the FBI’s investigation into the Trump campaign, as well as actions by Attorney General Sessions that may have violated his recusal pledge, it is imperative that the next FBI director be trustworthy and operate independently, free from political influence, including any potential loyalty pledge requested by President Trump.

“Christopher Wray’s firm’s legal work for the Trump family, his history of partisan activity, as well as his history of defending Trump’s transition director during a criminal scandal makes us question his ability to lead the FBI with the independence, even-handed judgment, and commitment to the rule of law that the agency deserves. Given that Wray touts his deep involvement in the Bush administration’s response to the 9/11 attacks, which includes his connections to some of the most unlawful legal memos on Bush-era torture programs, the Senate should press Wray to come clean about his role in the programs. In this important moment for our country, the American people deserve a commitment from any nominee for FBI director to the foundational principles of our Constitution, and that that commitment outweighs any loyalty to a political party or a single politician. We will be watching closely in the coming days to ensure Wray makes these commitments and earns the trust of the public.”

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