Many Republicans remain furious over the FBI’s search of former President Trump’s home for classified documents. Some GOP lawmakers say they don’t trust the bureau anymore, and have even said they are in favor of abolishing the nation’s top law-enforcement agency. Straight Arrow News contributor Ruben Navarrette notes that the FBI’s crusade against Trump has damaged the agency’s credibility.
You see, you don’t have to believe that Trump is totally innocent. What? That he’s never broken the law. Yeah, right. And they didn’t do anything wrong by removing more than 300 classified documents from the White House and then refusing to give them back. Are you kidding? You’re not to believe any of that, to believe that the FBI has it in for the former president. Some historians and political observers say this feud between Trump and the FBI dates back to the 2016 election, when Trump attacked the Bureau for not finding his opponent Hillary Clinton guilty of, wait for it, mishandling government documents.
Others point out that there were FBI officials who plotted against Trump even before he got elected. Remember that bizarre story about how FBI agent Peter Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page were in the lead up to the 2016 presidential election, meeting with assistant director Andrew McCabe and his office to cook up a quote “insurance policy” to save the country in case Trump won the White House. Still others believe the trouble started in 2017, when Trump fired then-Director James Comey in the middle of investigation by the FBI into whether several Trump advisors were colluding with Russia. It was, after all, the FBI that kept alive the probe into the discredited Steele dossier, which alleged that several Trump operatives worked with the Russians to fix the 2016 election. And speaking of the Steele dossier, it’s possible that the FBI and the Justice Department misled judges on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court, the FISA court, by relegating to a footnote in a surveillance request the fact that the dossier was paid for by – wait for it – the Hillary Clinton campaign.
I bet all these things played a role in the deterioration of the relationship between Trump and the FBI. How could they not? But I also think that Trump was always destined to clash with the agency because the FBI is the epitome of the Washington, D.C. swamp. And Trump, unlike the current president, who has spent the last 50 years in the Beltway, is a D.C. outsider. The FBI was never going to like Trump, never going to trust him and never feel connected to him. Still, it does appear that some within the bureau got carried away with their dislike for Trump.