In August 2022, Joe Biden proposed to give the IRS $80 billion over the next decade to hire 87,000 new IRS agents. When the IRS issued a job posting seeking agents to hire, it sought those who would “carry a firearm and be willing to use deadly force if necessary,” conservatives exploded with justifiable outrage. In January, House Republicans acted to defund those 87,000 new agents in the debt ceiling increase bill passed by the House. We shall see what happens to that effort in the ongoing debt ceiling negotiations.
However, receiving considerably less notice is a huge appropriation to build a new FBI headquarters and more money which doubtless will be used to investigate and prosecute its political opponents. Amazingly, the new FBI building would be fully twice the size of the Pentagon.
Aside from the sheer magnitude of the building, we have Biden Administration priorities baked into the construction: “Riveted into the colossal new project are woke regulations to ensure that the FBI center will comply with diversity, equity, LGBTQ+, and climate change political goals.” The government’s General Services Administration:
set out five criteria for choosing the property…. Of those five criteria, cost to the taxpayer is viewed as least important. The equitycriterion, to comply with diversity and climate-change executive orders signed by Joe Biden, is weighted as 50 percent more important than the cost. The site, design, and structure of the new FBI headquarters must “advance racial equity and support for underserved communities through the Federal Government,” GSA says…. [Emphasis added.]
Giving this rogue agency a vast new complex larger than the entire Kremlin complex in Moscow, while steeping it in woke ideology and Green New Deal nonsense, is the height of folly. (By the way, Wikipedia explains that the word “kremlin” means “fortress inside a city.”) House Republicans must use the power of the purse to stop the FBI’s runaway trajectory. There are a number of tactics the House should employ.
Congressman Matt Gaetz (R-FL) recently introduced the “FBI Washington Field Office House Arrest Act,” calling for the House to halt all spending on the new FBI building. “The cancer at the Washington Field Office has metastasized so large that the entire body is in critical condition,” Gaetz said. “Gifting the FBI a new headquarters larger than the Pentagon would condone, reinforce, and enable their nefarious behavior to levels we have never seen before.”
The FBI budget in FY 2001 was $3.33 billion. Today, it is nearly $11 billion. There are some 37,000 FBI agents — enough, apparently, to raid former Presidents’ homes and to arrest pro-life protestors at gunpoint. And 37,000 agents are enough to launch a political hit on President Trump with the phony “Russia collusion” story that special counsel John Durham’s report has now concluded never should have happened. Even CNN’s Jake Tapper noted, “It is regardless devastating to the FBI and, to a degree, it does exonerate Donald Trump.”
As the Gaetz’ legislation notes, “constructing a new headquarters for the Federal Bureau of Investigation at this time would distract from critical oversight of this dangerous politicization … [and] it is entirely inappropriate for a domestic law enforcement agency that employs 2.3 percent of the manpower of the United States military to receive a headquarters larger than the Pentagon….”
The estimated price tag for the new headquarters — before federal contractors start piling up cost overruns — is $4 billion.
After the Durham Report was released on May 15, 2023, Gaetz tweeted, “The Durham report is an absolutely DAMNING treatise on the weaponization of the FBI against President Trump. This should be a clarion call for legislative reform. We need to defund and deauthorize government entities that are converted from the just cause of defending our nation into enforcement wings of political parties.” Missouri GOP Senator Josh Hawley added, “There needs to be consequences. FBI leadership has clearly got to be changed…. I’m of the mind we need to end the FBI as we know it. It needs to be broken up.” House Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan agreed: “The only way we can hold them accountable is to go at the one thing that everybody cares about — the money…. We have to look at the appropriations. That’s the only leverage we ultimately have in Congress.”
Hawley, Jordan, and Gaetz are absolutely right. House Republicans must not be complicit in building a massive new complex to reward the FBI for its misdeeds and expand the FBI’s capability to launch political persecution of political opponents. The FBI has openly declared war on conservative and Christian dissent in America. House Republicans can no longer play political games. They need to step up and stop the FBI’s latest power and money grab, and defunding the woke new FBI headquarters boondoggle would be a great place to start.