FBI Director nominee Christopher Wray is sworn-in on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, July 12, 2017, prior to testifying at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee. (Pablo Martinez Monsivais/Associated Press)
WASHINGTON — The Latest on the Senate hearing on Christopher Wray’s nomination as FBI director (all times local):
The lawyer picked by President Trump to lead the FBI says he does not believe a special counsel investigation into possible coordination between Russia and the Trump election campaign is a “witch hunt.”
Christopher Wray’s comments to a Senate panel represent a break with President Donald Trump, who has described the probe in those terms. Wray also told senators at his confirmation hearing that he would never let politics get in the way of the bureau’s mission. ___
FBI director nominee Christopher Wray says he has no recollection of providing input on Bush-era Justice Department memos on the interrogation and detention of terror suspects.
Wray was asked during his confirmation hearing about his role in the so-called “torture memos” detailing the use of certain interrogation tactics such as waterboarding and sleep deprivation. Redacted emails to and from him are included in an ACLU database on the subject.
Wray says he does not support torture and says “I have no recollection of ever reviewing, much less providing input or comments or blessing, approval,” of memos on the subject.
Wray has been asked questions about his involvement in national security matters during the Bush administration, when the government authorized harsh interrogation techniques.
President Donald Trump’s pick for FBI director says he does not consider special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation a “witch hunt.”
Christopher Wray made the comments under questioning by Sen. Lindsey Graham about Trump’s own comments on the probe into Russian interference in the 2016 campaign.
In a series of statements on Twitter, Trump called Mueller’s investigation a “WITCH HUNT” based on the “phony” premise of possible collusion between Russia and a cadre of Trump campaign associates.
Wray says simply, “I do not consider Director Mueller to be on a witch hunt.”
President Donald Trump’s pick for FBI director says efforts to meddle or interfere with U.S. elections should be reported to FBI.
Christopher Wray’s comments came under sharp questioning by Sen. Lindsey Graham about revelations that Trump’s son’s met with a Russian lawyer during last year’s presidential campaign.
Graham asked whether Trump Jr. should have agreed to that meeting; Wray stopped short of answering.
Graham then asked whether he should meet with Russians if they wanted to help his campaign.
Wray told Graham he would probably want to consult with a legal adviser before doing so. Asked whether someone should report that to the FBI, he added, “Any threat or effort to interfere with our election by any nation state or any non-state actor is the kind of thing the FBI would want to know.”
FBI director nominee Christopher Wray says he has not been asked to pledge his loyalty to the White House nor would he do so.
Wray says his loyalty is to the Constitution, the rule of law and the mission of the FBI. The comments came after questions from Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy.
Wray says, “no one asked me for any kind of loyalty oath at any point during this process, and I sure as heck didn’t offer one.”
Leahy says he remains disturbed by FBI director James Comey’s abrupt firing. President Donald Trump is said to have asked Comey for a loyalty pledge during a private dinner before his dismissal.
FBI director nominee Christopher Wray…