GOP needs new ‘Church Committee’ to hold FBI, Justice Department accountable for their many abuses
The House Oversight Committee has unveiled its first ever bipartisan reform agenda and, like their previous House GOP plan, calls for a new House Committee solely tasked with investigating and holding the FBI and Justice Department’s feet to the fire. We’ve written extensively about the House GOP’s failed Republican leadership, but this new initiative could mark the beginning of the end.
We know very little of this new initiative, as the House GOP is holding it secret until the time of its public unveiling. The oversight committee’s executive director, Darrell Issa, told reporters, “I can tell you that this is going to be a comprehensive review of the Department of Justice and the FBI.” The only specifics about the new committee were that it would “delve into the FBI’s and Department of Justice’s handling of classified information and other matters of public policy or oversight.”
The committee’s goal is to make the case that those two institutions have consistently ignored or mishandled the public interest, and it seems they’ll be asking for more than mere accountability from top FBI and Justice Department officials. From the House Oversight Committee’s press release:
The committee will examine the FBI’s and Justice Department’s handling of classified information and other matters of public policy or oversight. The new committee will also focus on civil liberties and the “right to know,” including the Freedom of Information Act, and the public scrutiny that is appropriate for national security and intelligence decisions. It will examine the impact of the Bush administration’s handling of national-security information and civil liberties. The committee will also examine the impact of the Department of Justice’s and the FBI’s decisions to withhold and selectively declassify documents, as well as how the decisions were made and whether decisions about