GOP lawmakers to Christopher Wray: Be prepared to talk about Durham probe, school board memo

Republican lawmakers get a chance to ask FBI Director Christopher A. Wray about the Durham probe and the controversial Justice Department school board memo during a hearing on Tuesday.

In a letter sent Monday to Mr. Wray, Rep. Devin Nunes outlined the topics that GOP members of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence plan to ask the FBI director when he appears before the panel Tuesday.

The California Republican said members have questions about indictments in special counsel John Durham’s investigation into the origins of the FBI probe into alleged Trump-Russia election meddling in 2016.

They may also inquire about “reforms needed to prevent FBI investigations from aiding and abetting political misinformation campaigns, such as those surrounding the Steele dossier,” which became part of the basis for the FBI’s surveillance warrants for Trump campaign associate Carter Page.

Also on the Republican agenda: “systemic problems” linked to FBI search warrants granted by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court; the bureau’s handling of confidential sources and whether they were employed during the Jan. 6 Capitol riot; and Attorney General Merrick Garland’s Oct. 4 memo on school board meetings.

In the memo, Mr. Garland directed the FBI and other federal agencies to address the “disturbing spike” in threats against school board members.

In a press release accompanying the memo, Mr. Garland said he expected the FBI to form a task force with representatives from the National Security Division and other federal agencies “to determine how federal enforcement tools can be used to prosecute these crimes.”

Republican lawmakers have criticized the directive as federal overreach and an attempt to silence concerned parents. They have also alleged “collusion” between the White House and the National School Boards Association.

Mr. Nunes said members are specifically interested in whether the FBI has used any National Intelligence Program personnel or capabilities in relation to the memo.

“I wanted to inform you of the topics on which I anticipate Republican members may address to ensure you were adequately prepared to fully answer our questions,” Mr. Nunes wrote in the letter to Mr. Wray.

The Washington Times sent a request for comment on Monday to the FBI.