House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan of Ohio threatened during a Wednesday hearing to cut federal funding for the Department of Justice and the FBI over their conduct in Operation Crossfire Hurricane.
“I don’t think more training, more rules is going to do it. I think we have to fundamentally change the process, we have to use the appropriations process to limit how American tax dollars are spent at the Department of Justice,” Jordan said at a hearing on Special Counsel John Durham’s review of the DOJ’s investigation into Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign.
Jordan and other Republicans have already threatened to block funding for a new FBI headquarters and are likely to push for significant reforms to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. They could include eliminating a provision that allows intelligence officials to review information collected from Americans in some circumstances.
Federal officials used the FISA provision — Section 702 — to collect intelligence on Trump campaign aide Carter Page. DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz later found that law enforcement officials made “at least 17 significant errors or omissions” in their application to surveil Page. (RELATED: Special Counsel John Durham Briefs Intelligence Committee Behind Closed Doors)
“Why not just talk to him before you spy on him?” Jordan asked rhetorically about Page, noting that the FBI did not interview the foreign policy advisor before federal officials began wiretapping him.
Durham’s report found that the DOJ’s investigation into the Trump campaign “reflected a noticeable departure from how it approached prior matters involving possible attempted foreign election interference plans aimed at the Clinton campaign.” Notably, Bureau brass did not pass along intelligence to agents investigating the Trump campaign which indicated that Trump-Russia collusion allegations came from Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.
“We learned a lot of stuff from Crossfire Hurricane that headquarters did not work the investigation, it’s supposed to be the field offices. My concern is that the Department of Justice was not following these principles. Nothing, that’s the thing that scares me the most, nothing is changed. Mr. Durham, let me finish with this, 60% of Americans now believe there is a double standard at the Justice Department. You know why they believe that? Because there is. That has got to change,” Jordan added.
The FBI said in May that it has implemented “dozens of corrective actions” in response to the report.