Liberals’ FBI trust real gut buster
It is curious that the biggest fans of the FBI today are liberals. You hear them on MSNBC, singing from the same song sheet as former disgraced CIA and FBI operatives who have been transformed into esteemed and well-paid TV experts, shilling for whatever unseen forces motivate them, or creating confusing narratives to cover their tracks.
At the same time, a majority of Americans, 53%, view the FBI as “Joe Biden‘s personal Gestapo,” according to a new Rasmussen poll out Thursday.
The agency’s standing is at rock bottom among Republicans and conservatives, and not too healthy with independents and moderates.
The poll, conducted on Monday and Tuesday, one week after the extraordinary FBI raid on former President Donald Trump’s Florida mansion, shows just 50% of all voters hold a favorable view of the federal law-enforcement agency, down from 60% in May 2020.
But while just 30% of Republicans and 45% of independents feel positive about the FBI, 75% of Democrats and 81% of liberals are big fans.
Since the Mar-a-Lago raid, 70% of Republicans say they have less trust in the FBI than they used to, while 50% of Democrats trust it more.
Among Republicans, a staggering 76% agree with the Roger Stone quote that there is “a group of politicized thugs at the top of the FBI who are using the FBI . . . as Joe Biden‘s personal Gestapo.” About half (49%) of independents and a sizable 37% of Democrats also view the FBI as Biden’s Gestapo, while 72% of liberals disagree.
Liberals are happy because a politicized agency is coming after their ideological enemies, particularly their bête noire, Trump. It’s a stark turnaround from the days of decrying the FBI’s efforts to target Martin Luther King. The left has discarded any pretense of caring about civil liberties or injustice and instead sneers at conservatives who they claim are the ones who have jettisoned their core principles and now are “anti-cop.”
But conservatives are as pro-law-and-order as they ever have been, which is why they frown on a lying, leaking FBI that has proved itself untrustworthy, especially during the “Trump-resistance” years.
God knows Trump is no saint, and we still don’t know what the FBI was looking for in the documents they seized on Monday of last week. But it will need to be a national-security emergency to justify sending dozens of armed agents to raid a former president’s home and rifle through his wife’s underwear three months before the midterms.
Attorney General Merrick Garland refuses to justify the raid, saying the Department of Justice will “speak” only through its court filings.
So why does it speak so loudly through dubious leaks to favored organs like The New York Times and The Washington Post, floating all manner of possible justifications.
Garland and FBI Director Christopher Wray have been huffing and puffing over criticism of the FBI and the DOJ the past week.
But when 44% of Americans say they trust the FBI less after the Mar-a-Lago raid compared to just 29% who trust it more, you have a reputational problem that no amount of spin or threats will fix.
There still must be decent people in the FBI, judging by whistleblowers who have come forward to Republican lawmakers in recent weeks to reveal how information from Hunter Biden’s laptop was suppressed by rogue agents in October 2020 and dismissed as Russian disinformation, a ruse that amounted to election interference.
But those at the top have ruined the FBI’s reputation through their own arrogance, abuse of power and refusal to be accountable.
Don’t listen to me. Listen to toothless DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz, who has castigated the FBI for all sorts of failures and deceptions, including failing to protect Americans’ civil liberties in surveillance warrants.
His December 2019 report into the malign Crossfire Hurricane investigation into Trump-Russia collusion found FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith doctored a document to get a wiretap on Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, an innocent man whose life they destroyed by the FBI’s zeal to find dirt on Trump’s supposed Russia ties.
Horowitz also was “deeply troubled” by text messages between FBI agent Peter Strzok, who led Crossfire Hurricane, and his mistress, FBI lawyer Lisa Page (now an MSNBC legal analyst) in the summer of 2016, in which they referred to Trump as an “idiot” and fretted over whether he might win the election. “We’ll stop it,” wrote Strzok, referring to a mysterious “insurance policy” he apparently had up his sleeve in the unlikely event of a Trump win.
A direct line
Listen to former counterintelligence federal prosecutor Kash Patel, who says there is a direct line from Hillary Clinton’s emails to the Russia-collusion hoax to the suppression of Hunter Biden’s laptop to the Mar-a-Lago raid.
Patel, a Trump loyalist, worked for the House Intelligence Committee as an aide to then-Rep. Devin Nunes to bust open the Russiagate scandal, in which the Clinton campaign and the FBI tried to frame Trump as a Russian agent who stole the 2016 election.
Now he suspects the raid on Mar-a-Lago is part of a cover-up to ensure the whole truth about Russiagate is never revealed.
“It’s the same counterintelligence crew that did Russiagate, the Hillary emails and Hunter Biden [cover-up], the January 6 [investigation into Trump] and now the raid on President Trump’s home,” he said in a phone conversation this week.
Patel had been representing Trump in his “bureaucratic battle” with the National Archives over documents related to Russiagate, which Patel says Trump declassified first in October 2020 and then did a second batch on his last day in office.
Whether he did or didn’t manage to declassify documents found at his home is a matter of legal debate.
But slow-walking by the DOJ meant “40% of the documents never came out.”
Patel believes the remaining documents contains the “insurance policy” that disgraced agent Strzok thought could be used to stop Trump.
In his view, Trump’s enemies “are overreacting because they don’t want him to run in 2024 . . . They can say you are under criminal investigation, how can you run?”
If Republicans take back the House in November, they need to “subpoena everything and everyone [to] force those documents out” so the American people finally know the full truth about Russiagate and bad actors in the federal bureaucracy.
Only with accountability and transparency can the FBI ever hope to win back the trust it has lost.