DeSantis and GOP Governors Criticize FBI Search of Mar-a-Lago


The F.B.I.’s search of former President Donald J. Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home in Florida drew swift condemnation on Monday evening from some Republican governors who quickly backed Mr. Trump’s message that the Justice Department was being used against him.

Mr. Trump decried the search — which appears to be focused on potentially classified material he took from the White House to his Palm Beach home — in a statement as a “weaponization of the justice system” and an effort to prevent him from running for president again in 2024.

Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida and Gov. Kristi Noem of South Dakota, both Republicans, doubled down on Mr. Trump’s language in statements of their own, denouncing the “weaponization” of the federal government.

“They’ve been after President Trump as a candidate, as President, and now as a former President,” Governor Noem wrote on Twitter, referring to the Justice Department. “Using the criminal justice system in this manner is un-American.”

Gov. Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas, a former U.S. attorney, said on Twitter that the search was “unprecedented & alarming” and that the probable cause affidavit authorizing the search should be publicly released.

“Normally that would be under seal but since Trump announced the raid then the probable cause should be made public,” he wrote.

In Alaska, Gov. Mike Dunleavy wrote on Twitter that the search was evidence of “the politicization of the FBI against Donald Trump that started before he was even elected and continues to this day.”

House Republicans loyal to Mr. Trump directed their ire at the leadership of the F.B.I. and the Justice Department.

Representative Kevin McCarthy of California, the House minority leader, threatened “immediate oversight” of the Justice Department if Republicans retook the House in the November midterm elections — and warned that Attorney General Merrick B. Garland would be targeted.

“Attorney General Garland, preserve your documents and clear you calendar,” he wrote in a statement.

On Fox News on Monday evening, Representative Jim Jordan of Ohio, a close ally of Mr. Trump, demanded answers from Mr. Garland and Christopher Wray, the F.B.I. director.

“What were you really doing? What were you looking for?” he said. “Why not talk to President Trump and have him give the information you’re after? This is unbelievable.”





Source: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/08/08/us/politics/gop-desantis-trump-fbi.html