Ahead of Oversight Hearing Next Week, Durbin Speaks with FBI Director Wray About Domestic Terrorism Threat

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today spoke to Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Director Christopher Wray on how the Bureau is allocating its resources to respond to and address the threat of violence by white supremacists and other far-right-wing extremists following the insurrection at the Capitol on January 6.  Today’s call comes ahead of an FBI oversight hearing next Tuesday, March 2, in the Senate Judiciary Committee, where Wray will testify for the first time since the January 6 insurrection.

“The tragic events of January 6 put on full display that violent white supremacists pose the most significant domestic terrorism threat to our nation.  For too long, the federal government has turned a blind eye to this evil in our own backyard.  This must change,” Durbin said.  “Unfortunately, the FBI appears to have taken steps in recent years that minimize the threat of white supremacist and far-right violence.  On today’s call, I raised my concerns about whether the FBI is allocating resources in a manner that reflects the scale of this threat.  I look forward to Director Wray’s testimony next week on this critical issue.”

Yesterday, Durbin led several Democratic members of the Senate Judiciary Committee in a letter to Wray requesting information on the FBI’s response to the ongoing threat of domestic terrorism in the United States.

Since 2017, Durbin has been the lead Senate sponsor of the Domestic Terrorism Prevention Act, which would enhance the federal government’s efforts to prevent domestic terrorism by establishing offices dedicated to combating this threat; requiring federal law enforcement agencies to regularly assess this threat; and providing training and resources to assist state, local, and tribal law enforcement in addressing it.