tv FBI News Conference on Inspector General Report CSPAN June 14, 2018 6:48pm-7:10pm EDT
their skis, since they put out my thoughts without talking to me. i don't have any personnel announcements to make. i show up here every day, alove my job, i'm glad to work for the president. each and every day i'll pray for clarity and discernment on what my future looks like. right now i think the country's looks pretty good and i'm glad to be part of that process and i'm going to continue to do my job. thanks so much, guys. have a great day. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2018] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] >> c-span's "washington journal," coming up tomorrow, minnesota's congressman tom emmer talks about campaign 2018. then new york democratic congressman paul tonko reviews house action this week on the opioid crisis.
be sure to watch c-span's washington journal live at 7:00 eastern friday morning rm join he discussion. >> today f.b.i. director christopher ray held a news conference on the justice department's inspector general's report related to the hillary clinton email investigation and 16 presidential campaign. his announcement is fol led by top dels reacting to the report. >> good morning. thank you all for being here. the u.s. office of inspector general issued its report about activity in the run up to the 2016 election. let me say up front they appreciate the inspector general's work on this important eview.
thought i'd take a few minutes to talk about the report then i'm happy to take questions. the f.b.i.'s mission is to protect the american people and uphold the constitution. to carry out that mission we're entrusted with a lot of authority. so our actions are subject to close over-- eversight from the courts, from the courts and entities like the inspector general. that's how it should be. that kind of examination that kind of oversight, makes the f.b.i. stronger as an organization and makes the pling more safe. with that in mind, let me briefly address the findings in the inspector general's report. i take this report very seriously and we accept the findings and recommendations. it's also important, though, to note what the inspector general did not find this report did not find any evidence of political bias or improper considerations
actually impacting the investigation under review. the report does identify errors of judgment, violations of or even disregard for policy and decisions that at the very least , with the benefit of hindsight, were not the best choices. we've already started taking the necessary steps to address those issues. first, we're going to hold employees accountable for any potential misconduct. we've already referred conduct highlighted in the report to our disciplinary arm. o.p.r. which is the f.b.i.'s independent office of professional responsibility. we need to hold ourselves accountable for the choices we make and the work we do. we're doing that fairly but without delay in the way that people should expect. we're going to adhere to the
appropriate disciplinary process and once that process is complete, we won't hesitate to hold people accountable for their actions. second, we're going to make sure .hat every f.b.i. because change starts at the we're going to convene for in depth train specifically focused on learning the lessons we should learn from this report. then we're going to train every single f.b.i. employee, both new hires and veterans alike, on what went wrong is these mistakes will never be repeated. third, we're going to make sure we have the policies, the procedures, and the train tharg needed for everyone to understand and remember what is expected of all of us.
that includes drilling home the importance of objectivity. of avoiding even the appearance of personal conflicts or political bias in our work. ensuring that recusals are handled correctly and effectively and communicated to all the right people. making all of our employees fully aware of our new policy on media contacts, which i issued last november, and making painfully clear that we will not tolerate noncompliance. ensuring that we follow all d.o.j. policies on public statements about uncharged conduct or ongoing investigations. and ensuring that our employees adhere strictly to all policies and procedures about the use of f.b.i. systems, networks, and devices.
i'm also -- i've also directed our associate deputy director to lead a review of how the f.b.i. handles sensitive investigations and to make recommendations on how those should be staffed, structured, and supervised in the future so that every sensitive investigation is conducted to the f.b.i.'s highest standards. we're going to continue also to work with the department to gauge our progress in each of these areas. the o.i.g. report makes clear that we've got some work to do. but let's also be clear on the scope of this report. it's focused on a specific set of events back in 2016 and a small furm of -- number of f.b.i. employees connected to those events. nothing, nothing in this report impugns the integrity of our work force as a whole or the f.b.i. as an institution.
as i said earlier, fair and independent scrutiny is welcome and appropriate accountability is crucial. we've got -- we're going to learn from this report and be better and stronger as a result. but i also want to be crystal clear about the f.b.i. that i get to see. in the past 10 months, i've been able to visit over 30 of our f.b.i. field offices around the country and a whole bunch of our legat offices overseas. i've visited with folks from every f.b.i. division at headquarters, and in office after office, meeting after meeting, i see extraordinary people doing extraordinary work. again and again, i hear remarkable stories. frankly, inspiring stories, about the work the -- the work the men and women of the f.b.i. are doing to protect the american people and uphold the constitution. just in the past several months, we've disrupted terrorist attacks in places ranging from
the fisherman's wharf in san francisco to a crowded shopping mall in miami. in march, we charged a ring of iranian state sponsored hackers with stealing terabytes of data from scores of american companies, universities and government agencies. in austin, we deployed more than 600 of our people to assist in the investigation of the package bombings down there. this year alone we've rescued 130rks5 kids from child predators. some of them as young as seven months old. we've arrested more than 4,600 gang member, violent gang members, in the past several months. our f.b.i. lab has closed thousands of cases through fingerprint analysis and d.n.a. analysis. and our hostage rescue team has deployed something like 27 different times on missions around the country.
i could go on and on. the f.b.i.'s men and women are ing all that work with the unfailing fidelity to the constitution and laws that it demands the bravery that it calls for, and the integrity that the american people rightly expect. as f.b.i. director i'm laser focused on ensuring that our folks get to continue that great work and do it with the fidelity, bravery and integrity we've always had. as i've been saying since as far back as my confirmation hear, i'm a huge believer in the importance of process. doing this job by the books in every respect and i expect all our employees to do the same. try to emphasize that at every opportunity. in my view, the f.b.i.'s brand over the past 110 years is based
less on all of our many, many successes than it is on the way in which we've earned those successes. following our rules, following the law, following our guidelines, staying faithful to our core values and our best traditions, trying to make sure we're doing the right thing but doing it in the right way, treating everybody with respect, following the facts independently and objectively no matter who likes it. that is the best way that in my view is the only way, to maintain trust and credibility with the people we serve. i appreciate this chance to respond to the i.g.'s report and i also refer you for more detail in our written response that's attached at the end of the inspector general's report. with that, i'm happy to take a few questions. reporter: anything particular in
the report refers to o.p.i.? >> i can't comment on any specific matter, there is conduct highlighted and we've had that referred to our displaynary aarp, our o.p.r. mr. way: it's a tough process a rigorous process. we expect that process to be followed and once that process is complete we won't hesitate to hold people accountable. reporter: i know you talk about a specific conduct, but it dez director comey and peter strzok used personal email account, only peter strzok is being referred for investigation as violation of policy. is that investigation ongoing and are any other individuals being investigated internally? mr. wray: i'm not going to talk about any personnel matter, i don't think that would be appropriate. as i said in the beginning i'm committed to doing the right
thing in the right way and by the book. by the book doesn't talk about pending personnel matters with all of you, much as you might like me to ask that. reporter: you said there's nothing in the report that impugns the integrity of the f.b.i.'s work force as a whole but the report does say that there's a culture of leaking. . second, we're going to be doing intensive training on things that includes contacts with the media. third, we're going to make painfully clear to everybody that we won't tolerate
noncompliance. and then last i've asked ropr to take a hard look at whether or not they think the penalties that exist right now are sufficient to deal with that kind of conduct. yeah, sir. reporter: i want to talk a little bit about -- maybe ask you about the reputation of the f.b.i. certainly the f.b.i.'s taken a lot of hits from the president, his tweets and certain things he's said about certain very,s -- investigations. members of congress have certainly hit at you guys. now this report takes some issues with the f.b.i. a lot of what we've been hearing is that people are worried that the reputation of the f.b.i. has suffered as a result of all the activity in the last several months. i'm just wondering if you think that's the case and if so what you intend to do to try to fix some of the perception perhaps that the public may vft f.b.i. now. -- may have of the f.b.i. now. mr. wray: that's a subject that'snary and dear know. there's no shortage of opinions about us out there.
i will tell you that the opinions that i care the most about are the opinions of the people who actually really know us and know us through our work. so i'm focused on what juries think when our agents take the stand. i'm focused on what judges think when we give them a search warrant. i'm focused on what victims and their families think when they are asked, who do you trust to get your child back? i'm focused on what do our state and local law enforcement partners think when they think, who do they trust, who do prosecutors want to work with on cases? to me it's the work that matters. i look at things like that. i look at how our recruiting is doing. i look at how our retention is doing. our recruiting, we get about 12,000-plus people, for example, trying to be special agents every year. our admission rate, our selection rate, 5%. that's better than the admission rate at harvard, yale, princeton or stanford. and it's not a fluke. we just rble reasonably hired a
whole new honors interns. so the young people coming out of college who have lots of choices about what they want to do with their careers. we have the highest number of applicants we've ever had for our honors intern program. want to know what that admission rate was? 5%. i look at things like that, i look at what people think when they know us and i look what the people think when they express their views through their actions. i look at our attrition rate. our attrition rate in the agent population in the f.b.i. is 0.8%. so in my view, the views that matter, the opinions that matter are the views of the people who know us through our work and when i go around the country and around the world and i talk to our partners and i talk to the victims and talk to the people who know us, our brand's doing just fine there. thank you. reporter: when you read this report, if you could sum up your reaction and -- from having read it in one word, what is that word and how would you describe your emotional reaction to it? mr. wray: disappointed.
reporter: why -- [inaudible] -- personal email address for any feb -- [inaudible] mr. wray: not that i can think of. reporter: [inaudible] -- some people are going to use -- some people are already criticizing you, by sharing documents, investigate documents. how do you respond to criticism -- [inaudible] -- by sharing investigative material -- [inaudible] -- mr. wray: on the first point, i'm not going to speak for the office of special counsel. i would note that there are a number of things that we've done both in terms of referring people to o.p.r., but also in terms of reassigning people to try to ensure that we're bringing the right kind of integrity to staffing and all sensitive investigations. as to the congressional
question, my view is we have an obligation to be responsive to legitimate congressional oversight. that's part of our job, as i said, at the beginning. we are entrusted with enormous power and so we should expect we're going to get tough questions and we need to be responsive and corporate with that. but, but we also have an obligation to protect sources and methods and not to compromise ongoing criminal investigations and to adhere to things like grand jury secrecy and things like that. so the challenge is how do we make sure we do both? we're committed to trying to do both. and i think we've struck the right balance so far. reporter: [inaudible] -- specifically about the president's criticism of the f.b.i.. he has over the last year or so attacked the credibility of the f.b.i. do you think this d.o.j. i.t. report now validates -- now validates his criticism? mr. wray: i'm not going to comment on any other person's opinions, no matter where they're communicated.
what i am going to do is talk about the opinions that i think matter. the opinions to me that matter are the opinions of the people that are relevant to our work, day in, day out. all across this country. we have 37,000 f.b.i. employees. agent, analysts and staff. and scores of task force officers that work with them. and every day, every day all around this country and around the world, those people are having to make important decisions that protect lives. the opinions of the people that they have to engage with on that work, those are the opinions that matter to me. that's what i'm focused on. as far as the report goes, there's some sobering lessons in there and we're going to learn those lessons and we're going to act on those lessons and that's the way the f.b.i.'s always handled these things in the past and that's what made the f.b.i. stronger over the last 110 years. reporter: do you believe members in congress are acting in good faith in their oversight effort, given that the f.b.i. has disagreed with some of the characterizations of meetings and various things
that have come out? mr. wray: i think congress has a job to do. and we have a job to do. and together we're trying to work through the various issues that are presented by the tensions between congressional oversight and, as i said earlier, protection of sources, methods, trade craft, ongoing investigations and things like that. we're committed to trying to work through those things with congress. >> one more question. mr. wray: yes? reporter: identified the people who were involved or have been referred to o.p.r. but can you tell us how many have been referred to o.p.r. as a result of this report? mr. wray: i can't. that's not a topic i can comment on. i really want to be careful. i know why you're asking the question. i respect that. but it's really important to me to make sure that we don't compound the mistakes that are found in this report by deviating from our process. so i think it's very important that we respect the appropriate process, that it be done right, as i said earlier, by the book. once that process is complete,
we will not hesitate to hold eople accountable. reporter: [inaudible] mr. wray: the lessons are, number one, the importance of trying to make sure that we avoid even the appearance of bias in all of our work. that objecttivity and the appearance of object ivity matters. there's lessons in there about contacts with the media and appropriate engagement with all of you. there's lessons in there about appropriate uses of devices. there are a number of things. the o.g. has nine recommendations at the end and i think those are the lessons that we're trying to learn from this report. we take it very seriously and we accept the findings and the recommendations. thank you. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2018]
mr. schumer: ok, good afternoon, everyone. i'm proud to be joined by my colleague, senator feinstein and warner, and my dear friend and house colleague, who i know longer than anybody probably in this room, jerry nadler. leader pelosi, ranking member cummings, and ranking member schiff are voting and on their way. and they'll speak when they get here. well, so we now know the long-awaited report from the inspector general has been made public. several things are c