The Mar-a-Lago raid reeks of political intimidation
9 August 2022
Donald Trump announced Monday night that the FBI had raided his home in Mar-a-Lago. One would assume the bar should be exceedingly high for the Department of Justice to execute a search warrant on a man who was previously the leader of the free world. That would not appear to be the case here. Nor, sadly, is it surprising, given the seemingly endless fishing expedition that Biden and the Democrats have subjected Trump to over the past year and a half.
According to a report from the New York Times, agents supposedly went into Trump’s home in Florida to check whether he had retained or hidden any classified documents from his time at the White House. Thus far, the only evidence provided for this is that he ‘delayed returning’ about 15 boxes of material to the National Archives (the boxes were returned in February). Trump claimed in a statement that he had been working with the government to return all of the required documents.
‘After working and cooperating with the relevant government agencies, this unannounced raid on my home was not necessary or appropriate,’ he said in a statement. ‘They even broke into my safe!’ he wrote. ‘What is the difference between this and Watergate, where operatives broke into the Democrat National Committee? Here, in reverse, Democrats broke into the home of the 45th President of the United States.’
The decision to send agents into Trump’s home over a quibble about document retention reeks of political intimidation. The FBI has refused to comment, suggesting that at least immediately they didn’t find anything actionable. The LA Times reported back in February that prosecutors would have to prove that Trump intentionally mishandled or hid materials, which is a tall ask. When Bill Clinton was found to have inappropriately kept gifts and furniture from the White House, he returned the items and the situation was treated as a misunderstanding. The Clintons’ home was not raided by the FBI. Why was Trump’s? Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that violating the Presidential Records Act can bar someone from running for political office again. Hmm.
The January 6 Committee, led by Democrats, has failed to secure testimony that changes the narrative surrounding the riots, let alone that justifies referring Trump to the Department of Justice for criminal charges. Instead, many of their star witnesses, such as former Mark Meadows aide Cassidy Hutchinson, have been publicly contradicted by other sources. The New York attorney general and the Manhattan district attorney have separately been trying to get at the former president through his business ventures, alleging tax fraud and fraudulent company valuations. This raid feels just like another harebrained scheme to sink Trump once and for all.
It also reminds us that Attorney General Merrick Garland is not the moderate the Democrats painted him as when angling to get him on the Supreme Court. Garland has overseen the most wanton politicisation of the Justice Department in modern history. When protesters illegally gathered outside of the homes of Supreme Court justices after the Court appeared set to overturn Roe v. Wade, Garland did not act. When parents spoke passionately at local school board meetings against progressive gender ideology, critical race theory, and school closures, Garland’s DoJ created a threat tag to track them.
Naturally, Trump’s critics will celebrate the FBI’s raid. They will be blissfully unconcerned that the gratuitous and unjust investigation of political opponents is just the kind of authoritarianism they warned would be ushered in by the Trump administration. Remember, the Biden administration is going to restore our norms and institutions!
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This article first appeared on the Spectator’s World Edition.