Democratic Rep. Gerry Connolly of Virginia said Thursday that the retaliation three former FBI agents suffered for speaking out did not make them “whistleblowers.”
Garret O’Boyle, Stephen Friend and Marcus Allen testified before the select subcommittee about retaliation they faced after they raised concerns about FBI activities, noting their security clearances had been suspended, resulting in them losing their pay and health benefits.
“That doesn’t make you whistleblowers. Maybe those grievances were legitimate, or maybe aspects are legitimate, all of you have careers, and I’m sorry for the situation in which you find yourselves. But this is not a form for individual members of any agency, federal agency unless there’s a broad pattern of discrimination or violation of law to air their grievances, their employment grievances,” Connolly said during a hearing held by the House Judiciary Committee’s Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government after quizzing a witness on the “deep state.”
“And I must say, listening to this hearing, I don’t walk away convinced of anything other than we’re listening to sad tales of certain individuals about their situation and the enumeration of grievances does not constitute whistleblower status,” Connolly continued.
“In weaponized fashion, the FBI allowed me to accept orders to a new position halfway across the country. They allowed us to sell my family’s home. They ordered me to report to the new unit when our youngest daughter was only two weeks old,” O’Boyle told the subcommittee in his opening statement. “Then, on my first day on the new assignment, they suspended me; rendering my family homeless and refused to release our household goods, including our clothes, for weeks.”
Friend said he was retaliated against after he raised concerns about the FBI’s handling of cases stemming from the Jan. 6, 2021 riot at the Capitol building. Nearly 1,000 people have been arrested for their parts in the riot, according to a Justice Department website.
Allen testified to the subcommittee that he was retaliated against for forwarding information to his superiors that “questioned the official narrative of the events of January 6.”
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