Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) expects the House’s newly created subcommittee examining the “weaponization” of the federal government to be “some of the most important work of the 118th Congress.”
Stefanik, who chairs the House Republican Conference, spoke to Breitbart News in an interview about what to anticipate from the panel after Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) named her and 11 other Republicans as members of it this week.
“We’re coming off of two years of single-party Democrat rule, when there was virtually no oversight effectively of these agencies that have run afoul, and, in many cases, I believe, have committed illegal acts,” Stefanik said.
The subcommittee, led by Judiciary Committee chair Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), will have far-reaching authority to investigate the Justice Department, intelligence community organizations like the FBI and CIA, and private companies like Twitter.
Modeled after the famous 1975 Church Committee chaired by former Sen. Frank Church, the subcommittee is expected to have a massive budget — roughly the size of former Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) now-dissolved January 6 committee — to probe allegations of civil liberties violations within the agencies.
“Take the FBI and DOJ for starters,” Stefanik said. “There is a long, long list of abuses and illegal targeting, not just of high-profile Americans who happen to be conservatives or Republicans but everyday Americans, whether it’s the raid on Mar-a-Lago, whether it was the illegal spying on the Trump campaign in 2016, whether it was the tampering with the FISA documentation, or whether, most recently, it was the fact that one of Bob Mueller’s top FBI officials working on the special counsel was, at the time, he was the FBI, New York, head of counterintelligence, was just found guilty of accepting hundreds of thousands of dollars from Russia.”
The official, Charles McGonigal, a former special agent in charge at FBI Counterintelligence Division in Stefanik’s home state of New York, was recently indicted on charges of conspiring to violate and evade U.S. sanctions against Russia and money laundering.
McGonigal allegedly had a business relationship with Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska, whose name made headlines during special counsel Mueller’s 2016 investigation into alleged Trump-Russia collusion because of Deripaska’s ties to Paul Manafort, a former Trump campaign manager.
“These agencies are ripe for transparency and ultimately reforms, and this select committee is going to be one of the many tools we have in the majority to get to the truth and make sure the American people know the truth,” Stefanik said.
While some of the subcommittee’s investigations will target agencies’ work that predates the Biden administration, Stefanik said the “deep state needs to be rooted out at the core of these agencies, and it’s culminating in the politicization and how the Biden White House has used these agencies as their political arm and a political weapon.”
Stefanik said Republican subcommittee members are going to be “coming to the table with ideas” at a meeting Friday as they begin their work, and as they await the appointment of Democrat members, whom Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) is expected to choose soon.
The subcommittee, which originally was set to have 13 members, is now expected to have 21 — 12 Republicans and nine Democrats — pending a resolution expanding the panel’s bench.
Write to Ashley Oliver at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter at @asholiver.