Christopher Wray, director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, announces major law enforcement actions related to the illicit sale of drugs and other illegal goods and services on the darknet during a press briefing at the Justice Department in Washington on September 22, 2020.
Olivier Douliery | Pool | Reuters
President Joe Biden will hold FBI Director Christopher Wray in his position, a White House official told NBC News.
Wray, a representative for former President Donald Trump, has a ten-year term. It was expected to stay in place.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki declined to say whether Wray would stick to his role at her first press conference Wednesday. She said she hadn’t spoken to Biden about it.
The FBI is currently conducting a massive investigation into the January 6th riot in the U.S. Capitol. Dozens have been arrested and charged in connection with violating Congress.
The Department of Justice, of which the FBI is affiliated, is also investigating the financial affairs of Biden’s son Hunter Biden. Hunter Biden announced the investigation in December.
Wray was installed by Trump in 2017 after the dismissal of former President James Comey, who at the time was leading an investigation into the alleged links of the Trump 2016 campaign with Russia.
Comey’s dismissal triggered Robert Mueller’s appointment as special advisor.
While Trump appointed Wray, the two had a rocky relationship from the start. In an early break with Trump, Wray told the Senate Judiciary Committee in July 2017 that he did not believe Mueller’s investigation was a “witch hunt,” as Trump had often claimed.
Before Comey, only one FBI director had been fired in the bureau’s history. Former President Bill Clinton fired William Sessions in 1993 after a Justice Department report raised ethical issues.
Biden is committed to protecting the Justice Department’s independence. He announced earlier this month that Merrick Garland, a left-wing centrist, would be his choice for attorney general.
“We must restore the DOJ’s honor, integrity and independence to this nation that has been so badly damaged,” Biden said at the time.
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