Chaffetz Statement on Comey Firing

Published: May 10, 2017

Letter to DOJ IG asks for expansion of ongoing review 

WASHINGTON – Today, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) released the following statement after sending a letter to the Department of Justice (DOJ) Inspector General Michael Horowitz:

“Previously I asked Inspector General Horowitz to review the FBI’s actions in advance of the 2016 election. Today I sent a letter urging IG Horowitz to expand the scope of his review to include the decision to fire Director Comey. I look forward to receiving the IG’s findings.” 

Background:

In January 2017, the Office of Inspector General announced it had initiated a review of allegations regarding certain actions taken by the DOJ and the Federal Bureau of Investigation in advance of the 2016 election. Chairman Chaffetz’ request would expand the scope of that investigation.

The DOJ OIG has roughly 450 employees. IG Horowitz was unanimously confirmed in 2012 under the Obama Administration.

Below is a copy of the request sent to DOJ IG Michael Horowitz. Click here to view online.

Dear Mr. Horowitz:

Yesterday, May 9, 2017, the President fired the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, James Comey. In a letter to the Director advising him of his termination, the President cited recommendations from Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.  The Attorney General and Deputy Attorney General based their recommendation on the Director’s decision to publicize the results of the FBI’s investigation of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton last year, among other things. 

I request that you expand the scope of your office’s ongoing review of allegations regarding certain actions by the Department of Justice and the FBI in advance of the 2016 election to include the facts and circumstances surrounding the removal of Director Comey.  You stated previously that your work includes an examination of whether Comey’s public communications and notifications to Congress about the Clinton investigation comported with Justice Department and FBI policies and procedures. You separately stated “if circumstances warrant, the OIG will consider including other issues that may arise during the course of the review.” The recommendation to remove Comey indeed warrants such consideration. 

The Committee on Oversight and Government Reform is the principal oversight committee of the House of Representatives and may at “any time” investigate “any matter” as set forth in House Rule X.

I thank you for your attention to this matter.

Sincerely,

Jason Chaffetz,
Chairman