Republican Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley accused top Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) officials of “political bias” during a Friday appearance on “America’s Newsroom.”
Grassley, a ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said the agency lacks “full transparency” with how it treats Republicans and Democrats accused of mishandling classified information. The senator’s remarks follow allegations he received about the FBI labeling evidence in the Hunter Biden probe “disinformation.”
“The people should have extraordinary confidence in the FBI and that confidence has been shaken not just because of what happened a couple weeks ago, but because of a history of this sort of thing that’s been going on for the last several years,” Grassley said. “We shouldn’t have to put up with the FBI … they’ve got to be totally independent [and] transparent. Transparency brings accountability and just do everything so there’s no question of political bias.”
Fox News anchor Bill Hemmer shared a Gallup poll finding that Americans’ confidence in the FBI has dropped in the last couple of years. In 2019, 57% of Americans believed the FBI was doing an “excellent job,” but that confidence dropped to 44% in 2021. Along political lines, 26% of Republicans believed the agency was doing a good job, while 41% of Democrats had the same belief. (RELATED: ‘Department Of Trust Us’: Sen. Chuck Grassley Says FBI Director Refused To Answer About The Raid)
Grassley said it is the top officials in the agency that hold political biases, particularly Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office Timothy Thibault. Grassley has recently accused Thibault of suppressing an investigation into Hunter Biden’s possible unregistered foreign lobbying in overseas business deals, money laundering and tax law violations.
“He [Thibault] started an investigation on Trump on evidence of criminality and Hunter Biden, he stopped that investigation,” Grassley said. “If you go back and look at Thibault’s social media, you know he’s a highly partisan guy. So what happened when I really sent information? [FBI Director Christopher] Wray moved him out of that position and Wray immediately had a telephone conversation with me and prior to that, for six months, I had been trying to talk to Wray on the telephone and I couldn’t get any sort of answer at all.”
Grassley said whistleblowers informed him the agency was allegedly downplaying Biden’s reported “criminal financial and related activity” in Ukraine and China prior to the 2020 presidential election. He accused Thibault of “clear political partisanship” in a July 18 letter to Wray and Attorney General Merrick Garland. The letter further alleged that Thibault “declined to open or approve investigations based on partisan objectives.”
In a separate letter addressed to Wray, Grassley accused the FBI of practicing a double standard in probes of Hunter Biden and former President Donald Trump.
“How can the Hunter Biden criminal investigation be full and complete if the FBI improperly shut down verified and verifiable information and sourcing relating to potential criminal activity? How can Congress and the American people trust the results?” the letter said.
The FBI denied to comment on Grassley’s remarks.