Statement by Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa
Senate Judiciary Committee
June 9, 2022
we’re voting on a number of judicial nominees. We’d ask that the nominees up
for the first time other than the U.S. Attorneys be held over.
of those nominees up today is Judge Stephen Locher, who has been nominated to
serve as a District Judge on the United States District Court for the Southern
District of Iowa. I’m pleased to support Judge Locher, an Iowan who represents
the best and brightest of our legal community.
I noted a few weeks ago, the Judicial Selection Commission that Senator Ernst
and I set up
supported Judge Locher. Since Judge Locher’s nomination, we’ve learned about
his impeccable credentials, his experience in both civil and criminal law, his
trial experience, and his experience as a federal magistrate judge.
also shown that he understands the proper role of a judge. He’ll enforce the
Constitution and the laws as we write them. With such a glowing record to stand
on, there’s no doubt why Judge Locher received support from both of his
home-state senators. Judge Locher is an exceptional nominee who is
well-qualified to serve as a federal district court judge. It’s my pleasure to
support his nomination.
week, while I was meeting with my constituents in Iowa, I sent a letter
to the Justice Department and FBI. I also sent a letter
to the Department’s Inspector General. In those letters, I provided evidence of
extreme left-wing bias shown by an Assistant Special Agent in Charge at the FBI’s
Washington Field Office. His name is Timothy Thibault.
This FBI agent’s left-wing political bias
was exposed by his LinkedIn and Twitter accounts. There, he posted highly partisan
material relating to his superiors, matters under the FBI’s purview and matters
under his purview. According to his Twitter feed, which is also under his name,
he mocked the election of Senator Tuberville and Mississippi at the same time. He
said, “Thank God for Mississippi – state motto of Alabama.”
He recently tweeted “Can we give Kentucky
to the Russian Federation?” In response to a Catholic priest’s tweet critical
of abortion, he tweeted an anti-Catholic slur to both the Catholic priest and
then-President Trump: “Focus on the pedophiles.”
After my letters were made public, he
reportedly set his tweets to protected mode and deleted his LinkedIn profile. I
fear that his political bias has infected years of FBI investigations. Since I
issued my letters, I’ve had whistleblowers reach out to me about Thibault and
others. I’ll have more to say about that in the coming weeks.
But, I’ll say this now: if I hear of any
retaliation, the Justice Department and FBI can expect a swift and powerful
I’d also like to note my concern that the
Justice Department continues to ignore this committee’s oversight requests. One
example is the Department’s infamous October 4, 2021, school board memo. That
memo essentially compared concerned parents to domestic terrorists. Attorney
General Garland has refused to withdraw it despite the National School Boards
Association renouncing the letter.
January 18, 2022, I sent Attorney General Garland questions about his memo. I’ve
yet to receive a response. He issued his memo 5 days after the National School
Boards Association letter. So, he’s capable of responding quickly when he wants
a final example for now: On January 19, 2021, then-President Trump issued a
memo declassifying certain Crossfire Hurricane records for public
dissemination. Since February 2021, my and Senator Johnson’s staff have repeatedly
requested an update from Attorney General Garland as to when the records will
be produced to Congress. To date, the Department has failed to produce declassified
records to Congress. It’s now June 2022.
appreciate the Chairman’s attempts to achieve some respect from the Justice
Department, but it unfortunately hasn’t been very successful. I believe it was
stated that I’d received responses to most of my requests by letter. That’s
just not accurate. I’ve received letters, but they have little or no substance
to them. That’s not a response.
also haven’t received requested document productions. I think that says it all
with respect to how the department views this committee.
I want to address the news that law enforcement arrested a man near Justice Kavanaugh’s
home who intended to murder him. He should be prosecuted to the full extent of
said repeatedly that the leak of the Supreme Court’s draft opinion was
dangerous. The rhetoric from far-left activists aimed at the Supreme Court that
followed only enflamed the situation. And publishing the justices’ home
addresses and calling for action is irresponsible.
of clear threats to the safety of the justices and their families, the Senate
acted quickly to authorize protection for the justices’ families. The House has
delayed acting for weeks. I hope they’ll act now.
Justice Department should also reconsider its refusal to prosecute protestors
outside of justices’ homes. The administration cannot continue to send the
message that disrespecting the rule of law is acceptable when someone disagrees
with the Court’s decisions.