FIRST ON FOX: Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee are seeking testimony from a Justice Department official over the department’s lawsuit against SpaceX — in which the administration accused Elon Musk’s company of discriminating against refugees and asylees – as well as other concerns including an alleged inaction over a recent gun order by the governor of New Mexico.
Chairman Jim Jordan wrote to Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke inviting her to testify to the Committee as part of its oversight efforts into alleged “weaponization” of the DOJ. Clarke is part of the department’s Civil Rights Division, which the lawmakers say has pursued a “double standard” in enforcing laws.
Specifically, he points to the lawsuit into Elon Musk’s SpaceX, which was accused by DOJ of having discriminated against asylees and refugees in its hiring practices, instead only hiring U.S. citizens and green card holders. Clarke said in a statement that the DOJ’s probe had also found that SpaceX recruiters and high-level officials “took actions that actively discouraged asylees and refugees from seeking work opportunities at the company.”
Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio. (Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)
“Asylees and refugees have overcome many obstacles in their lives, and unlawful employment discrimination based on their citizenship status should not be one of them,” she said.
Jordan’s letter says the lawsuit is an “egregious example of how the Biden Administration is weaponizing the federal government against its own citizens.”
“Whereas the Department chose to resolve similar allegations with other companies short of litigation, it notably has not done the same with SpaceX,” the letter says, arguing it is part of a pattern by the administration against Musk since he bought Twitter, now called X.
“Finally, it is particularly concerning for the Department to allege that SpaceX has engaged in discriminatory practices by hiring U.S. citizens and green card holders to perform sensitive national security-related work when the Department, too, has citizenship and residency requirements for its employees,” he writes.
Musk had said that the company was told they were not allowed to hire anyone who not a citizen or a permanent resident of the U.S. and had also called the case an example of “weaponization of the DOJ for political purposes.”
Separately, Jordan expresses concern that the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act of 1994, has been used by the Department in a way to protect pro-choice activists and buildings, but that ignores attacks on pro-life activists and facilities — including churches.
“You are in the best position to inform Members about the politically motivated enforcement of the FACE Act and related civil rights issues,” he says.
Elon Musk took to X to clarify Walter Isaacson’s claim that he suddenly cut off Ukraine’s access to the Starlink internet system. (Justin Sullivan)
Jordan also says the committee is interested in how the department is handling the recent Supreme Court ruling barring affirmative-action race discrimination policies in admissions, as well as a recent move by New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham to bar the open or concealed carry of firearms in the state as part of a public health order.
The Republicans say the latter appears to be a “clear Constitutional violation” but the DOJ has so far not moved on it. That is in contrast with moves against Republican-led states, including most recently a lawsuit by the Department against a border barrier established in the Rio Grande by Texas.
“Although the Department has been quick to challenge certain Republican-led states, there is no indication that the Civil Rights Division will act—at all—to uphold the Second Amendment rights of New Mexico residents,” Jordan says.
“In order for the Committee to conduct its oversight responsibilities of the Civil Rights Division, we ask that you appear for a hearing in the near future to allow Members to better understand the Department’s allegations of discriminatory hiring practices by SpaceX, its double standard in enforcing the FACE Act, how it intends to conform to SFFA, how the Department plans to ensure New Mexico residents may freely exercise their Constitutional rights, and related matters,” he says..
It marks the latest part of the Judiciary Committee’s investigations into the alleged “weaponization” of government by the Biden administration. Last week the committee’s Subcommittee on Government Weaponization threw its support behind a lawsuit over what states say is collusion with social media companies to censor free speech on issues such as COVID-19 and the 2020 election.