President Trump has stepped up attacks on the Justice Department and FBI, accusing top officials of bias against Republicans in a Friday morning tweet.
“The top Leadership and Investigators of the FBI and the Justice Department have politicized the sacred investigative process in favor of Democrats and against Republicans,” he wrote.
“A lot of people should be ashamed of themselves,” he said.
In the past, Trump has been more specific about exactly which people in the FBI and the Justice Department he dislikes. But while he’s often argued that they are acting politically, many of the officials on the receiving end of his criticism are, in fact, Republicans or were appointed by Republican presidents.
Here’s a look at the political affiliations of five people Trump has charged with bias.
Trump fired Comey as FBI Director last year, citing his handling of an investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private email server and also invoking the FBI’s Russia investigation. Comey served in the Justice Department under President George W. Bush and was appointed to lead the FBI by President Barack Obama in 2013. In Capitol Hill testimony in 2016, Comey said, “I have been a registered Republican for most of my adult life,” but that he is no longer affiliated.
Wray replaced Comey as FBI director and has recently found himself crosswise with the president over whether or not to release the GOP’s controversial Nunes memo. The White House is worried Wray will quit if Trump decides to release the memo, CNN reports. Wray served in the Justice Department under Bush and is a registered Republican, who has donated money to Republicans over the years, including presidential candidates Mitt Romney and John McCain, NJ.com reports,
One of the leading targets of Trump’s ire, Mueller is now the special counsel overseeing an independent investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and possible obstruction of justice by Trump and his aides. The New York Times recently reported that Trump tried to have Mueller fired in 2017. Mueller became the head of the FBI under Bush, and the Washington Post reported at the time that he was a registered Republican.
Trump has reportedly been furious with his own attorney general since Sessions recused himself from matters related to the 2016 campaign or Russia, which tipped off a chain of events that led to the appointment of Mueller as special counsel. But Sessions is arguably the most political and conservative member of this group. A longtime Republican senator from Alabama, Sessions was the first senator to endorse Trump’s candidacy and became one of his top campaign surrogates.
After Sessions recused himself, Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein became the top person at the Justice Department overseeing the Russia investigation. He is a registered Republican, but he’s served nearly three decades at the Justice Department under five different administrations and earned the respect of members of both parties.