Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle on Sunday urged their colleagues to crack down on recent attacks on the FBI following its raid of former President Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate.
Trump allies described the unprecedented raid – which included the seizure of 11 sets of classified documents as part of the agency’s investigation into whether Trump violated the Espionage Act and other federal laws – as proof that the FBI and the Department of Justice (DOJ) have been weaponized. by the Biden administration.
Some Republicans have called for defunding the FBI, while others have floated the idea that agents could go after all Americans, including showing up in their living rooms.
Democrats and Republicans took to the Sunday political broadcasts to speak out against the attacks on the agency, which reports an increase in threats against law enforcement officers following the raid.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), during an interview with Andrea Mitchell on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” explicitly linked attempted violation from the FBI’s field office in Cincinnati on Thursday to recent GOP rhetoric.
The suspect, who was shot by police, is believed to be in Washington, DC, during the build-up to the January 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol.
“[These are] the kind of things that happen when you have a president who attacks law enforcement and attacks the law,” Klobuchar said.
“I used to think the Republican Party used to stand with law enforcement,” she added. “And I hope some of them do today because that kind of talk is very dangerous for our country. They are career men and women who are just doing their jobs.
On CBS’ “Face the Nation,” House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) echoes Klobuchar’s concerns.
“The reaction of many of my fellow Republicans and those around the former president to attack the FBI on this and endanger FBI agents is just another level of damaging irresponsibility,” Schiff said. to moderator Margaret Brennan.
Trump himself has repeatedly attacked the FBI since the raid, also suggesting an unproven conspiracy that the agency was producing evidence to hurt him politically. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) announced Friday that she introduces articles of impeachment against Attorney General Merrick Garland, who said he personally approved the search.
But other GOP members pushed back against those attacks on Sunday even as they demanded more information from the FBI and the DOJ.
“The FBI is simply fulfilling its responsibilities under the law, a legal search warrant that a magistrate has signed,” Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson (R) said on ‘State of the Union’. CNN.
“And they didn’t go there with FBI raid jackets,” he added. “They tried to restrain their behavior by carrying out this warrant.”
Hutchinson defended his party members for criticizing the FBI, saying they ‘see the establishment going after Donald Trump’ and have unanswered questions, but he called on his fellow Republicans to ‘stand with’ the forces of the order.
“If the GOP is to be the party that supports law enforcement, law enforcement includes the FBI,” he said on CNN.
Maryland Governor Larry Hogan (right), who like Hutchinson was quick to criticize Trump, likewise sunday parted with impassioned rhetoric of some in the GOP.
“Some will say it’s just political motivation and weaponization of the Justice Department, but … they have probable cause to sue him for things that could be really important,” Hogan said on ‘This Week’. from ABC.
But Hogan told moderator Jonathan Karl that the research has motivated Trump’s base, which still has “a lot of unanswered questions.”
“I was not one of those who was just reacting, just defending Donald Trump, but I understood that, without anyone understanding what it was, that this was going and could lead to even more division and of angry rhetoric from both sides,” Hogan said on ABC.
Brennan on “Face the Nation” directly asked Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), a senior member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, to respond to Trump’s rhetoric.
“I think it’s inflammatory,” McCaul said. “I don’t want to put any law enforcement in the bullseye of a potential threat. And he’s someone who’s worked with law enforcement for most of my career.
Also on CBS, Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.), a former FBI agent who serves on the House Intelligence Committee, urged colleagues to “reserve judgment” on the research and “understand the weight of their words.” .
But he described recent rhetoric as the latest example fueling violent acts, pointing to the 2017 shooting during a Republican practice for the annual Congressional baseball game and a man arrested in June after he allegedly attempted to assassinate Judge Brett Kavanaugh in the run-up to the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade.
“We’ve seen a lack of respect across the political spectrum, Margaret, which I’ve spoken about, with local law enforcement, with the Supreme Court, and now with federal law enforcement,” Fitzpatrick said. on CBS. “None of that is OK. None of that.”