The inclusion in the Republican coronavirus relief plan of $1.75 billion for a new FBI headquarters in Washington, a priority for President Donald Trump, drew bipartisan scorn Tuesday and is all but certain to be scuttled.
“That smells like a kind of strange addition,” Senate Homeland Security Committee Chairman Ron Johnson of Wisconsin said.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell deflected a question about how the funding was included, but said he wants “all non-Covid provisions out” of a final bill.
Plans to move the FBI from its current location about four blocks from the White House to the Washington suburbs had been in the works since about 2012, but were shelved after Trump took office.
It is apparent that Trump is trying to keep the bureau’s headquarters at its current site because it occupies a significant chunk of real estate near the Trump International Hotel, and keeping it there would prevent other commercial development in the spot, including competing hotels.