The hosts at “Fox & Friends” grilled White House spokesman Raj Shah over the scandal surrounding the resignation of White House staff secretary Rob Porter after domestic abuse allegations surfaced from two of his ex-wives.
Here’s the segment on Fox News:
“What is going on behind the scenes in terms of FBI background checks that might change the staff this week?” Brian Kilmeade asked Shah during the latter part of the segment.
“Well, again, the FBI background check process is one that, again, the FBI runs and we are a part of it. It is operated throughout the federal government,” Shah responded.
“It goes across agencies. It has been used from previous administrations,” he continued, “and will be used in future administrations. If any changes need to be made, we’ll look at that, but, you know, this is a process that we trust.”
“A two-time accused domestic abuser”
“Raj, did you change anything?” Kilmeade interrupted. “You relied upon it and you got burned because you had a two-time accused domestic abuser there at a very sensitive position where perhaps he shouldn’t have been had that been fully exposed. So what changes now?”
“I appreciate that point,” Shah replied. “But we also need to look at the process and how it’s worked on historically. If changes need to be made, we will look at that and review the processes. But right now we do trust the process. It has been used time and again for decades to protect our national security. We trust the FBI in these processes.”
“Raj, there is story out that somebody at the FBI told somebody at the White House back in November that this guy was a problem,” Steve Doocy asked. “Do you know who that person might be?”
“That is not accurate,” Shah told Doocy. “The FBI would not give a background check investigation directly to senior White House officials. It goes to a security office where then it is relayed, maybe, up the chain, maybe not.”
“But what we know about Rob Porter specifically,” he added, “and that is the incident that everybody is talking about, is that his background check investigation had not been completed yet.”
FBI Director Christopher Wray appeared Tuesday to contradict the official story from the White House when testifying before Congress. Wray said that the background check for Porter was completed in July, while the account from the White House is that they understood the full extent of the accusations against Porter much later.