- The Washington Times - Friday, July 16, 2021

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Friday that President Biden has confidence in FBI Director Christopher A. Wray, even as blunders keep mounting for the embattled bureau.

“Yes, he has confidence in Christopher Wray,” Ms. Psaki said at a White House press briefing.

Ms. Psaki’s comments come the same week that a scathing report by the Justice Department’s inspector general laid bare the FBI’s embarrassing bungling of its sex-abuse investigation of former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar.

The report found the FBI “failed to respond with the utmost seriousness and urgency that the allegations deserved and required.”

It also found that officials made “numerous and fundamental errors,” including failing to alert state or local authorities, and did not take steps to mitigate the ongoing threat of Nassar.

The inspector general also concluded the FBI did not document critical meetings, interviews or evidence linked to the allegations.

Nassar, who was accused of molesting at least 40 girls over a 14-month period, was convicted in 2017 of sexual abuse and child pornography charges.

The report was the latest embarrassment in what is turning out to be a humiliating summer for the bureau. In May, a leaked Justice Department inspector general report found that a top official sexually harassed subordinates.

A day later, an FBI agent was charged in Maryland with attempted murder for shooting a man on a subway.

Last month, a Louisiana-based FBI agent was charged with numerous sex crimes, including some against children.

Ms. Psaki dismissed concerns that the questions of competence could hamper the FBI’s effectiveness in combatting ransomware and domestic terrorism.

“The FBI has been a key partner, as have a number of entities on our national security team who can play a role in fighting against ransomware,” she said.

• Jeff Mordock can be reached at jmordock@washingtontimes.com.

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