After former President Trump‘s Mar-a-Lago home in Florida was raided by FBI agents, Republicans are slamming the Biden administration and accusing the Department of Justice of “political weaponization,” while Democrats are lauding the agency for holding Trump accountable for “wrongdoing.”
“The raid of MAL is another escalation in the weaponization of federal agencies against the Regime’s political opponents, while people like Hunter Biden get treated with kid gloves,” said Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. “Now the Regime is getting another 87k IRS agents to wield against its adversaries? Banana Republic.”
Multiple sources tell Fox News the FBI’s raid of Mar-a-Lago is related to the materials Trump allegedly brought to his private residence after his presidency concluded. That matter was referred to the Justice Department by the National Archives and Records Administration, which said it found classified material in 15 boxes at the residence.
House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy issued a warning to Attorney General Merrick Garland that extensive oversight by Republicans in Congress will be heading his way.
“Attorney General Garland: preserve your documents and clear your calendar,” wrote McCarthy.
South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem blasted Biden’s FBI, calling the agency’s actions “un-American” in a statement posted to Twitter Monday evening.
“The FBI raid on President Trump’s home is an unprecedented political weaponization of the Justice Department. They’ve been after President Trump as a candidate, as President, and now as a former President. Using the criminal justice system in this manner is un-American,” wrote Noem.
“Nothing like this has ever happened to a President of the United States before. After working and cooperating with the relevant Government agencies, this unannounced raid on my home was not necessary or appropriate,” Trump said Monday.
“It is prosecutorial misconduct, the weaponization of the Justice System, and an attack by Radical Left Democrats who desperately don’t want me to run for President in 2024, especially based on recent polls, and who will likewise do anything to stop Republicans and Conservatives in the upcoming Midterm Elections,” the former president continued.
But “Squad” Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., said the FBI is working toward “accountability” and went as far as to say Trump should be in prison.
“That’s what happens when you break the law, try to steal an election, and incite a deadly insurrection. Donald Trump should be in jail. I’m glad to see the FBI taking steps towards accountability.”
Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., called Trump’s statement “defensive” during an MSNBC segment Monday.
“But look, the FBI doesn’t just go in unless a judge signs off on a search warrant. That means they have some probable evidence about possible wrongdoing. And it’s something that the whole country needs to pay attention to and shows that Justice Garland, Attorney General Garland is setting this up step by step,” he stated.
“I think Attorney General Garland and the Justice Department have done a very good job by following the facts,” he said. “I do think that this gives me confidence that the Justice Department is really pursuing this thoroughly, objectively and in a nonpolitical way,” Khanna continued.
Congressional Republicans also took to Twitter, criticizing the FBI’s “unprecedented” raid.
“The only thing missing from the unprecedented FBI raid at President Trump’s home is Muammar Gaddafi’s sunglasses and cap on Joe Biden,” wrote Rep. Andy Biggs, R-Ariz.
Rep. Jody Hice, R-Ga., asked on Twittter: “What does the FBI know about Hunter Biden?”
GOP Rep. Jim Banks of Indiana mentioned the $739 billion Manchin-Schumer bill that just passed the senate, which expanded the IRS, in his rebuke of the FBI’s action.
Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel called the raid “outrageous.”
“Absolute power corrupts absolutely. Countless times we have examples of Democrats flouting the law and abusing power with no recourse, including Hunter Biden. Democrats continually weaponize the bureaucracy against Republicans. This raid is outrageous,” she wrote on Twitter.
“If the FBI can raid the home of a former US President, imagine what 87,000 more IRS agents will do to you,” he quipped on Twitter.
Federal law bars the removal of classified documents to unauthorized locations, though it is possible that Trump could try to argue that, as president, he was the ultimate declassification authority.
Fox News’ Brooke Singman, David Spunt, Bradford Betz contributed to this report.