Former president and Republican 2024 frontrunner Donald Trump lashed out at the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and FBI in a series of posts on his Truth social media account on Tuesday over their ongoing investigation of his handling of classified documents.
“The Marxists and Fascists in the DOJ & FBI are going after me at a level and speed never seen before in our Country, and I did nothing wrong,” Trump began a post on Truth Social on Tuesday morning.
The post came a day after Trump’s lawyers—Lindsey Halligan, John Rowley, and James Trusty—were seen leaving DOJ headquarters in Washington. Trump’s legal team had requested a meeting with the DOJ last month “to discuss the ongoing injustice that is being perpetrated by your Special Counsel and his prosecutors.”
In November, Attorney General Merrick Garland had appointed prosecutor Jack Smith to lead a special counsel investigation into Trump’s handling of classified documents after leaving the White House. The investigation has also been probing Trump’s involvement in the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, and whether Trump broke any laws in raising objections about the 2020 election results.
Trump proceeded to compare Smith’s investigation of his handling of classified documents to investigations of classified documents found in homes and office spaces belonging to President Joe Biden and former Vice President Mike Pence.
“Joe Biden kept (keeps) thousand of documents, in many locations, some illegally taken from skiffs while he was a Senator, a big portion of which were classified. He didn’t want to give them back, and still doesn’t,” Trump continued. “Nothing happens to him, with same reasonable prosecutor who correctly exonerated Mike Pence.”
Last week, the DOJ closed its investigation into Pence and declined to pursue charges. Trump said his case is being treated differently because Smith hates him personally.
“I have a much different prosecutor, a Trump hater!”
In a second post on Truth Social on Tuesday, Trump said the fact that he remains under investigation is a form of election interference by the DOJ and those above them.
“They don’t want to run against me. I ran twice, I did much better the second time, getting millions and millions more votes than the first, a record for a sitting President, and am leading Biden in the polls, by a lot. They are the Party of Disinformation! They are using the DOJ & FBI against me to Rigg (sic) the 2024 Election,” Trump said. “They’ll hit Hunter with something small to make their strike on me look ‘fair.’ Nothing about these Fascists is fair or honest. FIGHT!”
The sitting president’s son, Hunter Biden, is currently under investigation for possible tax fraud. Prosecutors may also charge Hunter Biden for lying about his drug use on a federal firearm purchase form.
Classified Documents Cases Compared
Trump has repeatedly argued that he had the authority as president to unilaterally declassify documents. This defense follows the logic that the power to classify and declassify information originates with the president, as the head of the executive branch. By contrast, the DOJ has argued that Trump has no proof that he had actually declassified documents he took with him after the presidency.
The DOJ had been aware that Trump possessed numerous documents from his time as president and had been involved in legal negotiations to gain access to those documents. The DOJ has said Trump or members of his team “concealed and removed” documents in a move that may have obstructed investigators before the FBI raided Trump’s home in August.
Some of the classified documents found in Biden’s possession correspond to his time as a senator and as vice president. Trump has argued that, as a senator, Biden would not have had the same ability to declassify the documents that a sitting president has.
Biden’s defenders have drawn their own distinctions between his case and Trump’s, arguing Biden was immediately cooperative with investigators while Trump and his team defied federal investigators.
Reuters contributed to this article.