Durbin Delivers Opening Statement During Senate Judiciary Committee Oversight Hearing With FBI Director Wray

This is the Committee’s second annual FBI oversight hearing since Senator Durbin became Chair, and FBI Director Wray’s third appearance before this Committee

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today delivered an opening statement during the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing entitled “Oversight of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.”

Key Quotes:

“Director Wray, when you appeared before the Committee last March—just two months after the January 6 attack on the Capitol—you told us that domestic terrorism “has been metastasizing around the country for a long time now, and it’s not going away anytime soon.” Today, ten years later, that threat has only grown worse.”

“Last year, Director Wray, you told the Committee that the top domestic terror threat “continues to be those we identify as Racially or Ethnically Motivated Violent Extremists, specifically those who advocate for the superiority of the white race.” You also said that the FBI has elevated Racially Motivated Violent extremists to its top threat priority, on the same level as ISIS. I look forward to hearing from you about what steps the FBI is taking to protect our communities from this growing threat.”

“Over the past two years, our nation’s public servants have faced a wave of violence and violent threats. Just yesterday the Committee heard from election officials who received death threats because of their work during the 2020 election… And we’ve seen unacceptable—and in some cases deadly—violence toward law enforcement officers who put their lives on the line to protect us.”

“The dual threats of domestic terrorism and hate crimes are heightened by easy access to firearms, especially deadly assault weapons… And we cannot ignore the dominant role guns play in assaults and killings of police officers. Our nation is awash in guns, from straw-purchased handguns to assault weapons that can pierce the Kevlar vests that are supposed to protect our men and women in uniform.”

“Director Wray, I hope you will discuss how the proliferation of assault weapons impacts the work of the FBI and its law enforcement partners.  We have a lot of ground to cover today, and I look forward to your testimony.”

Video of Durbin’s opening statement is available here.

Audio of Durbin’s opening statement is available here.

Footage of Durbin’s opening statement is available here for TV Stations.