'Tonight the FBI officially became the enemy of the people!!!' Rep. Ronny Jackson of Texas tweeted.
House and Senate Republicans are irate over the raid by FBI agents on Monday at former President Donald Trump's Florida estate and have vowed to defund the agency and seek retribution against it should the GOP regain control of Congress in November.
The promise to take funding from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and launch probes into the agency's search of Trump's Mar-a-Lago residence came in a flood of tweets after Trump himself confirmed that federal law enforcement officers had carried out the raid. Media reports said the FBI was searching for possible boxes of classified materials that Trump might have improperly removed from the White House when he left office.
"The FBI raid on Trump's home tells us one thing," Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) tweeted in response to the news. "Failure is not an option. We must destroy the FBI. We must save America. I stand with Donald J. Trump."
Republican lawmakers accused the FBI of wrongdoing, providing no evidence.
"Tonight the FBI officially became the enemy of the people!!!" Rep. Ronny Jackson of Texas tweeted.
Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas accused President Joe Biden of "using the FBI as his political enforcers"; meanwhile, Jonathan Martin of the New York Times tweeted, "Senior White House officials found out about the FBI's Mar a Lago raid on Twitter, had no notice, per source familiar."
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy promised an investigation of the Department of Justice: "I've seen enough. The Department of Justice has reached an intolerable state of weaponized politicization. When Republicans take back the House, we will conduct immediate oversight of this department, follow the facts, and leave no stone unturned. Attorney General Garland, preserve your documents and clear your calendar."
Experts noted, however, that the Justice Department would have had to clear a high legal bar in order to obtain a warrant to search Trump's residence.
"To obtain the warrant, DOJ had to present a detailed affidavit to a judge walking through the evidence they have that a crime was committed and providing some reason to believe evidence of that crime is at Mar-A-Lago right now," tweeted Renato Mariotti, a former federal prosecutor. "It is reasonable to presume that top DOJ leadership, including Attorney General Merrick Garland, personally approved this warrant, which appears to be the first warrant executed at the home of a former President. That suggests to me that they think the case is going places."
Many of the GOP lawmakers vowing to take steps against the FBI cheered the agency's probe into a private email server used by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, continuing to demand years later, "#LockHerUp."
However, they've been silent about Trump possibly taking highly classified material out of the White House and refusing to turn over documents that he was legally required to leave with the National Archives.
And despite falsely accusing Democratic lawmakers of wanting to "defund the police," some right-wing Republicans are calling for eliminating the FBI.
"DEFUND THE FBI!" Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene tweeted after the raid. "I've talked a lot about the civil war in the GOP and I lean into it because America needs fearless & effective Republicans to finally put America First. Last night's tyrannical FBI raid at [Mar-a-Lago] is unifying us in ways I haven't seen," she tweeted on Tuesday morning. "In January, we take on the enemy within."
The FBI has not issued any comments about the raid.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.