RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin called federal authorities’ search of former President Donald Trump’s Florida estate “a stunning move,” joining other Republicans suggesting it could have been politically motivated.
Youngkin went to Twitter on Tuesday morning to criticize the search and the Department of Justice, repeating a refuted claim about the DOJ’s response to threats against school board members.
The governor, who mentioned Trump by name, also pointed to the Justice Department’s decision not to prosecute demonstrators who protested outside the homes of Supreme Court justices after a leaked draft opinion revealed the court’s intention to overturn Roe v. Wade.
“A stunning move by the DOJ and FBI,” Youngkin tweeted from his personal account. “This same DOJ labeled parents in Loudoun County as terrorists and failed to enforce federal law to protect Justices in their homes. Selective, politically motivated actions have no place in our democracy.”
The claim about Loudoun County parents from Youngkin stems from a letter from the National School Boards Association and a subsequent order from Attorney General Merrick Garland.
The association asked President Joe Biden for federal assistance “to deal with the growing number of threats of violence and acts of intimidation occurring across the nation” in a letter that pointed to the arrest of a Loudoun County father at a school board meeting who confronted members over the sexual assault of his daughter in school.
The letter did say threats against school boards could be “the equivalent of domestic terrorism,” according to reports, but the association later retracted the claim.
An order from Garland directed the FBI to hold meetings across the country to address “threats against school administrators, board members, teachers, and staff” that “open dedicated lines of communication for threat reporting, assessment, and response.” The DOJ order did not refer to parents as “terrorists” or mention Loudoun County.
The search of Trump’s Mara-a-Lago estate on Monday, which the former president labeled a “raid,” is part of an investigation into if he took boxes of White House records that were classified, according to news reports. Trump and his allies denounced the search, many accusing federal authorities of playing politics.
Other Virginia Republicans weighed in on the search of Trump’s residence on social media Tuesday, including Reps. Rob Wittman and Bob Good. Rep. Elaine Luria (D-Va.) responded to a tweet from House Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, which prompted a reaction from her opponent in the November midterms, state Sen. Jennifer Kiggans (R-Virginia Beach).
“There is no way to defend Trump, only to deflect. As a member of the January 6th Committee, I understood that we would be attacked if the Republicans take control of the House,” Rep. Luria wrote on Twitter. “Seems like we will not be alone. Bring it on Kevin.”
“The dangerous precedent the Democrats set yesterday by weaponizing the FBI should anger and frighten every American. All to settle old political scores and silence their political opponents – it’s corrupt and it’s flat out unacceptable,” Sen. Kiggans responded. “Unfortunately, it’s no surprise that Elaine Luria has found a way to justify this blatant and flagrant abuse of power.”