- The Washington Times
Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Fox News host Jeanine Pirro accused FBI Director Christopher A. Wray on Monday of being part of the so-called “deep state” that she believes to be plotting against President Trump.

The host of “Justice with Judge Jeanine” slammed Mr. Wray, who Mr. Trump picked to succeed James B. Comey in 2017, while speaking to fellow Fox host Sean Hannity on the latter’s show.

She criticized Mr. Wray during a conversation about an effort by Republicans in the House of Representatives to obtain testimony from FBI agents involved in the government’s criminal case against Michael Flynn, Mr. Trump’s former national security adviser who pleaded guilty in late 2017 to lying to federal investigators but was recently abruptly cleared by the Department of Justice.

“I cannot for the life of me understand the lack of urgency by this FBI director,” Mr. Hannity said during the discussion on his eponymous Fox show. “He should be cleaning house.”

“He is resisting. He is no different than the people that he’s trying to cover for,” Ms. Pirro reacted. “Sean, I’ve said this before my show: Christopher Wray is part of the deep state. He is connected to them. He has no sense of urgency because he doesn’t want this stuff to come out.”

Ms. Pirro, a former New York state judge, has been a loud proponent of the theory that career government officials opposed to Mr. Trump are seeking attempt to undermine him from within, and she has written books about this alleged “deep state” plot against the president that he has subsequently promoted several times on social media.

The president, meanwhile, has previously claimed to be the target of “rogue bureaucrats” and has frequently blamed the “deep state” for scrutiny his administration has been under.

More recently, White House trade adviser Peter Navarro touched on the topic during an interview on ABC News’ “This Week” aired Sunday.

“We’ve had tremendous problems with, some people call it the ‘Deep State.’ And I think that’s apt,” said Mr. Navarro. “There’s a bureaucracy out there. And there’s a lot of people in that bureaucracy who think they got elected president and not Donald J. Trump.”

Mr. Wray, on his part, has previously denounced usage of the term “deep state” to describe individuals within the FBI’s ranks.

“I think that’s the kind of label that’s a disservice to the men and women who work at the FBI who I think tackle their jobs with professionalism, with rigor, with objectivity, with courage,” he told ABC last year. “So that’s not a term I would ever use to describe our workforce and I think it’s an affront to them.”

Flynn pleaded guilty in late 2017 to lying to the FBI about his conversations with a top Russian government official. Mr. Trump has frequently criticized the case in the years since, and the Department of Justice abruptly moved this month to drop the matter ahead of Flynn being sentenced. That request has not yet been approved by a federal court judge.

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