Wicker, Colleagues Press FBI For Update in Investigation of Pentagon Official

Armed Services Leader Joins Inquiry Into Classified Information Leak About Chinese Spy Balloon

May 25, 2023

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, joined his colleagues Senators Bill Hagerty, R-Tenn., Ted Cruz, R-Texas, Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and Tom Cotton, R-Ark., to request an update regarding the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)’s efforts to probe whether Dr. Colin Kahl, the Undersecretary of Defense for Policy, had publicly disclosed classified information.

The letter follows up on an April 2021 request by 18 senators, including Wicker, to investigate whether Kahl had disclosed classified information after leaving the Obama administration. Wicker updated this request after reports suggested Dr. Kahl had also possibly leaked sensitive information to the press related to the Chinese spy balloon.

“Our concerns have only grown after news reports emerged on March 9, 2023, that Under Secretary Kahl ‘leaked classified information about the Chinese spy balloon to deflect blame about the Biden administration’s mishandling of the situation,’” the senators wrote. “Indeed, only a day earlier, two Senators sent a letter to Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin raising concerns about Kahl’s alleged leak of classified information, noting: ‘It remains unclear whether this leak was cleared internally through the proper channels. Either way, it was a brazen attempt to shift blame.’”

This latest effort also comes after a series of inquires led by Wicker and Rubio into the Biden administration’s deflection on basic questions regarding the Chinese spy balloon. The Mississippi senator penned an op-ed in Fox News detailing the enormous harm that the Chinese spy balloon did to American national security.

Wicker previously opposed Kahl’s nomination for Undersecretary of Defense, citing his record of partisanship during the Obama administration. The Mississippi senator said that Kahl’s “words and actions show he is incapable of providing the leadership the American people deserve.”

A copy of the latest letter can be found here.