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Trump Selects Christopher Wray as FBI Director
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Christopher Wray

Summary: President Donald Trump has selected an FBI director replacement for James Comey from slim-pickings.

Former Federal Bureau of Investigation chief James Comey has finally been replaced. After a month-long search for someone to take over the position, President Donald Trump announced his pick Wednesday. Christopher Wray, who has defended and prosecuted white-collar crimes, including the representation of New Jersey’s governor through a political scandal.

  
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The Trump administration has not had an easy time of finding a replacement for Comey. Top candidates like former Senator Joe Lieberman removed their names from consideration, resulting in a lot of interviews by Trump with other contenders.

Trump calls Wray an “impeccably qualified individual” and “a fierce guardian of the law and model of integrity.” He served from 2003 to 2005 at the Justice Department. There he was an assistant attorney general, responsible for the criminal division.

The announcement comes just a day after Comey delivered his public testimony to a Senate committee. In the written testimony given to the panel, Comey claims that Trump told him he expected “loyalty” and then asked him to back away from investigating former national security adviser Michael Flynn’s connections to Russia. The reason for Comey’s termination has mixed reasons provided by the White House. Trump admits the “Russia thing” was a factor in Comey’s dismissal.

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The Senate must confirm Wray before he can officially become the director of the FBI.  Comey and Wray worked together at the Justice Department under former President George Bush. There they worked on the government case for the Enron Corp fraud scandal in the early 2000s against Kenneth Lay. Lay was convicted in 2006. Others involved in the case include Robert Mueller and Andrew Weissman. Mueller was the FBI director at the time of the case and now appointed as special counsel since Comey’s firing, Weissman is working with Mueller.

The criticism Trump is receiving over his pick of Wray involves his vow to rid Washington of elite groups of corporate lawyers. Wray is a perfect example of one a corporate lawyer that has had experiences that present conflicts-of-interest issues. Wray represented Gov. Chris Christie during the Bridgegate scandal, an alleged event where Christie directed the closure of a bridge to cause traffic jams as a political punishment against a local mayor. Two of Christie’s aides were convicted but Christie was never charged.



American Civil Liberties Union National Political Director Faiz Shakir said, “Christopher Wray’s firm’s legal work for the Trump family, his history of partisan activity, as well as his history of defending Trump’s transition director during a criminal scandal makes us question his ability to lead the FBI.”

Do you think Wray will be able to be a fair FBI director or are his alliances too strong? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.

To learn more about the Bridgegate scandal, read these articles:

Photo: usatoday.com



 

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