The House Judiciary Committee’s Select Subcommittee on the ‘Weaponization of the Federal Government’ held its first hearing Thursday, featuring tips from dozens of former FBI agents and the testimony of two former agents who have come forward to expose politicization within the agency.
The two former agents, Thomas Baker and Nicole Parker, spoke about their experiences while working at the FBI.
Parker said that she is enduring the stress of “putting a target” on her back and testifying to speak on behalf of “numerous current and former bureau employees who feel similarly that they do not have a voice.”
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House Judiciary Committee Chairman Republican Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan opened the hearing with an overview of FBI whistleblowers, amounting to “dozens and dozens” of individuals.
“In my time in Congress, I have never seen anything like this,” Jordan said. “It’s not Jim Jordan saying this, not Republicans, not conservatives, good FBI agents who are willing to come forward and give us the truth.”
Jordan sampled a handful of these tips, spanning back to Nov. 18, 2021, when an FBI whistleblower alerted House Judiciary Republicans that the FBI had create a threat tag for parents expressing concern at school board meetings, and ranging to Nov. 4, 2022, when a whistleblower revealed the FBI accepts private user information from Facebook without user consent, according to a House Judiciary report.
Johnson said at the hearing that he expects many of the whistleblowers will sit for transcribed interviews or testify during future open hearings.
“Every day, I woke up and I embraced being an FBI special agent until things changed,” said former FBI Agent Nicole Parker during the hearing.
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Over her twelve years with the agency, Parker said its trajectory “transformed” and principles “shifted dramatically.”
“The FBI became politically weaponized starting from the top in Washington and trickling down to the field offices,” Parker said.
“It’s as if there became two FBIs,” she continued. “Americans see this, and it is destroying the bureau’s credibility, and therefore the hardworking and highly ethical agents who still do the heavy lifting and pursue noble cases.”
Thomas Baker, former FBI Agent of 33 years, said the public loss of faith in the agency “breaks [his] heart.” He said the shift in culture was “deliberate” and set in place by former FBI director Robert Mueller.
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“The FBI director set out deliberately to change the culture of the FBI from a law enforcement agency to an intelligence-driven agency,” he said.
“The FBI, by urging Twitter to censor speech, which it could not itself do, was engaging in a perversion – a perversion of the First Amendment,” Baker later continued. “For most of FBI history, agents were trained as part of the FBI’s mission was to be a guarantor of the Bill of Rights. That has been turned on its head.”
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