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Republicans press Granholm on Department of Energy official's abrupt reassignment

"On Tuesday, October 17, we received word that Steven Black, the long-serving Director of the Office of Intelligence and Counterintelligence (DOE-IN) at the Department of Energy, was suddenly and without explanation reassigned," the group wrote.

Published: November 23, 2023 8:10am

A group of Republican senators is pressing Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm for an explanation for the abrupt reassignment of a senior intelligence official at the agency.

"On Tuesday, October 17, we received word that Steven Black, the long-serving Director of the Office of Intelligence and Counterintelligence (DOE-IN) at the Department of Energy, was suddenly and without explanation reassigned," the group, led by Idaho GOP Sen. James Risch wrote in a Tuesday letter.

"We are told he will be taking on a new role as 'Senior Advisor' in the Department. We are also aware that a study conducted by an outside contractor, which the Department has had in its possession since April, outlines disturbing findings as to the state of counterintelligence across the Department, to include the national laboratories," they went on. "As you are well aware, the Department of Energy and the research it supports, especially at the national laboratories, is among the most important national security work undertaken by this country."

The lawmakers did not explicitly address any findings of the contractor study nor how they may have directly related to Black. They nonetheless requested that Granholm keep him off any national security assignments.

"The findings in the contractor study, which Congress requested, are deeply concerning. If Director Black presided over DOE-IN over a period of time in which there were serious shortcomings with regard to counterintelligence, he should not be reassigned to any office within the Department that has a national security mission," Risch and co., continued.

The further requested that Granholm explain the reasoning behind Black's reassignment, the scope of his new position, and answer whether she agreed with the report's findings that purportedly found counterintelligence shortcomings at the Department.

Ben Whedon is an editor and reporter for Just the News. Follow him on X, formerly Twitter.

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