President Trump hinted Friday that Christopher Wray’s role as FBI director could be in jeopardy following his testimony before Congress earlier this week regarding Russian election interference and domestic security threats.
“We’re looking at a lot of different things,” Trump told reporters at the White House when asked if he could look to replace Wray. “I did not like his answers yesterday and I’m not sure he liked them either. I’m sure that he probably would agree with me.”
Wray has served as FBI director since May 2017, when he replaced James Comey. The president took issue with remarks Wray made before the House Homeland Security Committee on Thursday.
During the hearing, Wray said Antifa was a “real thing,” but told lawmakers he defined it as “a movement or an ideology” rather than an organized group. Trump has blamed Antifa for recent violence in several major cities and said he intends to designate it as a terrorist organization.
“We have quite a number — and I’ve said this quite consistently since my first time appearing before this committee — we have any number of properly predicated investigations into what we would describe as violent anarchist extremists and some of those individuals self-identify with Antifa,” Wray told the committee. He added the individuals who identify with the Antifa movement were “coalescing regionally into what you might describe as small groups or nodes” that are under investigation.
Wray also told the committee that the FBI had evidence that Russia was engaged in a “very active” effort to interfere with the upcoming presidential election with an apparent goal “to denigrate Vice President Biden.”
Trump told reporters that he “disagreed” with Wray on both points.
“Obviously China is at the top of the list and I think Russia and North Korea and many other countries can be talked about, but China would be at the top of that list, so I don’t know why that’s not mentioned,” Trump said.
The president added that Antifa had “hurt a lot of people.”
“The fact is that Antifa’s a bad group. They’re criminals and they’re anarchists and they’re agitators and they’re looters and rioters and everything else. They’re bad, and when a man doesn’t say that, that bothers me. I wonder why he’s not saying that,” Trump added.