In a column for MSNBC, former FBI Assistant Director for Counterintelligence Frank Figliuzzi called out an assortment of Republican Party lawmakers who have run to defend FBI agents who are balking at investigating and arresting those who took part in the Jan. 6 insurrection.
At issue is the FBI suspending Special Agent Steve Friend of the FBI’s Daytona Beach office who refused to take part in the arrest of a rioter which then led to Friend to reach out to Sens. Ron Johnson (R-WI) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) who fired off a letter to the FBI complaining about how Friend was being treated.
According to Figliuzzi, Friend and other law enforcement officials who refuse to do their jobs are out of line, and Grassley and Johnson should know better.
"In late August, Attorney General Merrick Garland issued a memo to all Justice Department employees, including those at the FBI, reminding them that are legitimate processes in place to report concerns — but back channel communications with law makers isn’t one of them," he wrote. "It’s a sad sign of our times that the institutions responsible for identifying those among us who reject the rule of law must also determine whether such people walk the halls of those same institutions."
He then added, "The people who claim they’re concerned about the FBI becoming political sure have taken a partisan path to raise those concerns. Throughout every FBI field office, from employee break rooms to the agency’s internal intranet, there are well-posted options to reporting misconduct, ethical or integrity concerns."
Writing, "Deeply flawed assertions, and the politically tinged way they’ve been raised, unfortunately cast a shadow on any more substantive claims made by the agents," he then explained, "There’s something even more disturbing about this small group of FBI agents who refuse to respect the rule of law and decide which parts of long-established criminal justice processes they will or won’t follow in that they’re exhibiting the same radicalized mindset of Jan. 6 defendants they’re supposed to be investigating and arresting."
"Law enforcement agents who mirror that behavior aren’t 'heroes' or patriots — they’re dangerous dupes who’ve lost their compass, and, I believe, ought to lose their jobs," he concluded.
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