House Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) has issued a subpoena to Bank of America (BoA) CEO Brian Moynihan in response to the bank’s alleged cooperation with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in regard to the January 6th riot at the U.S. Capitol.
In a letter addressed to Moynihan, Jordan accused BoA of withholding vital documents and communications from the Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government. Specifically, Jordan referenced a “filing” that BoA had allegedly submitted to the FBI without any legal process, in which the bank provided a list of customers who had made purchases in the Washington D.C. area around the time of the riot.
The documents obtained by the committee also revealed that the FBI had provided specific search terms to BoA, indicating an interest in the financial transactions of these customers who had made purchases of firearms, hotel accommodations, Airbnb rentals, or airline travel within a certain date range. Jordan questioned the legality of the FBI’s request and BoA’s compliance, stating that it was unclear if there was a valid criminal nexus.
Jordan further raised concerns about the privacy of BoA customers and the potential infringement of their financial data, stating that if the FBI did in fact have the authority to access sensitive customer information without a clear criminal link, then Congress would need to take action to protect Americans’ financial privacy.
The House Judiciary Committee’s probe into BoA’s cooperation with the FBI is part of a larger investigation into the politicization of federal government agencies. The committee has also been examining governmental pressure on social media platforms to censor information.
This subpoena is the latest development in a series of clashes between House Republicans and the Biden administration over the handling of the January 6th riot. Earlier this year, House Republicans issued a letter to the FBI demanding answers about the agency’s role in the events leading up to and on the day of the riot.
BoA has responded to the subpoena, stating that they complied with a legal process initiated by the Department of Treasury. However, according to the documents obtained by the committee, it was the FBI that reached out to BoA, not the Treasury Department.
The release of this information has sparked a debate about the extent to which the government can access personal financial information without a clear criminal nexus and raises questions about the privacy rights of American citizens.
It remains to be seen what actions the House Judiciary Committee will take in response to BoA’s cooperation with the FBI and whether Congress will step in to address concerns about Americans’ financial privacy.