Trump to nominate Christopher Wray as James Comey's FBI director replacement

WASHINGTON, June 7 (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday he plans to nominate Christopher Wray, a former U.S. assistant attorney general under President George W. Bush now in private practice, to lead the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

"I will be nominating Christopher A. Wray, a man of impeccable credentials, to be the new Director of the FBI. Details to follow," Trump said in a statement on Twitter.

The U.S. Senate must approve Trump's choice to replace former FBI Director James Comey, whom the president fired last month amid the agency's ongoing probe into alleged Russian meddling into the U.S. election.

Trump's announcement comes the day before Comey is scheduled to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Moscow's alleged interference and any potential ties to Trump's campaign or associates.

RELATED: Reaction to Trump's firing of James Comey

23 PHOTOS
Reaction to Trump's firing of James Comey
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Reaction to Trump's firing of James Comey
But does anyone seriously believe @realDonaldTrump fired the top person investigating his ties to Russia because he was unfair to Hillary?
Trump firing Comey shows how frightened the Admin is over Russia investigation
Gov. John Kasich statement on James Comey https://t.co/Wrwj6sGqnz
Removal of Director Comey only confirms need for select cmte to investigate #Russia's interference in 2016 election https://t.co/LfKlwSw6iQ
EVERYONE who cares about independence & rule of law in America should be "troubled by the timing and reasoning" of… https://t.co/NZY4qh3uiz
This is Nixonian. Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein must immediately appoint a special prosecutor to continue the Trump/Russia investigation.
Firing of Comey tainted by extraordinary conflict of interest. Independent prosecutor must be appointed to restore… https://t.co/lXBIJtTf18
First Pres Trump fired Sally Yates, then Preet Bharara. Now #Comey. Doesn't seem like an accident. We must have a special prosecutor.
If we don't get a special prosecutor, every American will rightfully suspect that the decision to fire #Comey was part of a cover-up.
We are in a full-fledged constitutional crisis.
Comey's fired, which means Trump must be one of the few people in DC that the FBI doesn't have something on.
My statement on James Comey https://t.co/NWBR8FGTCf
Elijah Cummings is calling for "immediate emergency hearings". https://t.co/iMsNmdPmHi
LEAHY: "This is nothing less than Nixonian." https://t.co/n4R4fWSgib
Sen. John McCain on Comey firing: "I regret that that took place. The president does have that authority, so I resp… https://t.co/pSEu3XXsj5
Statement on FBI Director Comey ➡ https://t.co/vB822Nw5OR
This should not be sugar coated. Firing Comey is up there in terms of the scariest things Trump has done.
I am troubled by the timing and reasoning of Director Comey’s termination.
My staff and I are reviewing legislation to establish an independent commission on Russia. The second paragraph of… https://t.co/qcm1PiFkNG
Ds were against Comey before they were for him.
U.S. Senator Susan Collins’ Statement on Director Comey #mepolitics https://t.co/LHCcbPJMsb https://t.co/xNUeGvENlv
Firing Comey has the foul stench of an attempt to stop an ongoing investigation into collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians.
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The president met last week with candidates for the FBI director post, including Wray, according to White House spokesman Sean Spicer.

Wray currently works for King & Spalding's Washington and Atlanta offices where he handles various white-collar criminal and regulatory enforcement cases, according to the firm.

He served as assistant attorney general in the Justice Department's criminal division from 2003 to 2005, working on corporate fraud scandals and cases involving U.S. financial markets, according to his biography on the law firm's website.

Many lawmakers have said Trump should pick a career law enforcement professional.

One former FBI official questioned whether Wray had the management experience to run an agency with more than 35,000 people, given the small size of the division he ran at the Justice Department. (Additional reporting by Susan Heavey and Doina Chiacu; Editing by Alden Bentley and Jeffrey Benkoe)

RELATED: American FBI directors through the years

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American FBI directors through the years
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American FBI directors through the years
J. Edgar Hoover: 1924-1972
William Sessions: 1987-1993
James Comey: 2013-2017
Robert S. Mueller III: 2001-2013
William D. Ruckelshaus (Acting): April 1973 - July 1973
Clarence M. Kelley: 1973-1978
William H. Webster: 1978-1987
Louis J. Freeh: 1993-2001
William J. Burns: 1921-1924
Thomas J. Pickard (Acting): June 2001-September 2001
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