Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) blasted the FBI’s conduct during the recent raid on Mar-a-Lago.
Appearing on CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday, Crenshaw said the FBI took extreme measures to extract classified documents from former President Donald Trump’s Florida estate earlier this month.
Crenshaw said that the raid on Mar-a-Lago was completely unwarranted, given that Trump had been complying with federal officials for some time. He also dismissed the idea that Trump was holding classified materials related to nuclear weapons in the boxes of documents the FBI seized.
“I’m not one to withhold criticism and even make my own side mad,” Crenshaw began. “I want to get to the truth. But I will be honest with you here, this– it’s hard to justify what the Department of Justice did here, in my opinion.”
“Here’s what it really boils down to,” he continued. “It’s not a question that it’s bad to have classified material in a non-SCIF [Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility] environment. That’s a non-secret compartmentalized infrastructure there. That’s wrong. But there’s ways to mitigate that, there’s ways to resolve that issue. And I still haven’t seen any evidence that Trump was even asked to give these documents back.”
“He’s been cooperating with them on these issues for a while now, for months. And so, why take it to extreme extent? And I think that’s why you’re seeing so much backlash from Republicans. You’re seeing everyone coalesce. It doesn’t matter what side of the issue they’re on with Trump, we’ve seen a lot coalesce around this one because it does seem unjust and there does seem to be a long history of loss of credibility at the Department of Justice at the hands of Democrats. And I think people are rightful rightfully frustrated about that.”
“This is a very unprecedented measure,” Crenshaw added. “And you know that when you are going after an ex-president who may run again, this is automatically political. You cannot separate the legal aspects of this from the political aspects of it. You can’t. And it doesn’t seem to me they’ve acted responsibly as a result of that.”
Tapper pressed Crenshaw, noting that at least one of Trump lawyer’s had signed a written statement to the Department of Justice saying all classified material had been returned to the federal government.
“Lawyers did sign that document that they have nothing left,” Crenshaw replied. “Now, that’s either a huge mistake on the lawyers, but even if it’s nefarious, then why not say ‘Hey we don’t believe you, now let us come back, let’s go through these boxes again’ … Do any of us really believe Donald Trump is reading nuclear secrets at his bedside at night?”