Pennsylvania House GOP Representative Brian Fitzpatrick revealed on Sunday that he was told his life was “in danger” amid the fallout from the FBI’s unannounced search for Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort.
Fitzpatrick, himself a former FBI agent, told CBS News’ Face The Nation that he was threatened by “some of the same people” who are carrying out verbal attacks on federal law enforcement agencies in the wake of the raid.
He also urged lawmakers on both sides of the aisle to “keep judgment and not prejudge things” about whether the documents seized by federal officers from Mar-a-Lago, meant that Trump was guilty of crimes.
But the former agency official seemed most concerned about a new Department of Homeland Security (DHS) bulletin warning the FBI of a spate of “violent threats” against federal law enforcement in the weeks following the raid.
The chilling memo, obtained by CBS Newsstates that the agencies “have observed an increase in violent social media threats against federal officials and facilities, including threats to plant a so-called dirty bomb in front of FBI headquarters and general calls for “civil war” and “armed insurgency.” .”‘
It comes at a time when top Republicans such as House GOP Conference Chair Elise Stefanik and GOP Whip Steve Scalise have accused FBI officers of “abusing” their positions and being “rogue” to attack Trump.
“I’ve been checking in with some of my colleagues, Margaret, over the past few days to make sure they were okay,” Fitzpatrick said. “Every elected official, every leader must consider the weight of their words.”
When asked if that also meant Trump, the congressman confirmed it did.
Representative Brian Fitzpatrick, a former FBI agent, said he was informed that his life was threatened in the wake of increased verbal attacks on federal agents during the Mar-a-Lago attack.
“I think everyone should be calling for calm, everyone across the board. And everyone should respect our law enforcement, whether they be local, state or federal,” Fitzpatrick said.
“I myself have been informed by the agency that my life has recently been endangered by some of these same people. And it’s… violence is never the answer to anything.”
He warned that democracy itself could “unravel” in the country if the “disrespect” for American institutions continues to grow.
“A lot of it starts with the words we use. So I’m urging all my colleagues — and we’ve seen disrespect across the political spectrum — … what I mentioned at local law enforcement, at the Supreme Court, now federal law enforcement. None of it is okay. None of that.’
Last Monday morning, the FBI executed a search warrant at Trump’s resort regarding classified documents sought by the National Archives.
After mounting pressure to make the order public, it was unsealed in a deal between Trump’s lawyers and the Justice Department.
Attorney General Merrick Garland announced on Thursday that he personally agreed to the request to file a warrant, which was later granted by a federal judge.
Since then, the FBI and DHS have identified “multiple articulated threats and calls for the targeted killing of judicial, law enforcement and government officials involved in the Palm Beach search, including the federal judge who approved the Palm Beach search warrant.”
Donald Trump has claimed he is the victim of political persecution after the FBI executed a search warrant regarding classified documents on his property
Trump supporters protest outside Mar-a-Lago in the days following law enforcement operation
Antimedia and pro-Trump protesters line the waterfront of President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate, two days after it was ambushed by FBI agents
“The FBI and DHS also observed that the personal identification information of potential targets of violence, such as home addresses and identification of relatives, was circulated online as additional targets,” the bulletin said.
It also highlights an incident last week when an armed Navy veteran attempted to break into the FBI’s Cincinnati office and was shot dead in a standoff with police.
One of Trump’s most vocal allies in Congress, Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, fueled the outrage by filing articles of impeachment against Garland, accusing him of arming the DOJ. The largely symbolic move is unlikely to pass the Democrat-controlled House of Representatives.
But other Republican lawmakers have urged their base to pass a verdict, but have demanded the release of the affidavit used to obtain the warrant.
That would include new information, such as what information was used to obtain the warrant in the first place.
“There is a continuum of ways to collect evidence, everything from the passive service of a subpoena with a future production date to the dynamic execution of a search warrant, which we saw here. There are many things you can do in between, including an immediate subpoena where you present that subpoena. At the door you don’t enter the property, but you demand immediate production in there,” the former FBI agent said.
“We don’t know what was appropriate, what was justified or not. And that’s why this statement is so important.’
He concluded with a final warning to lawmakers to “understand the weight of your words and support law enforcement, come what may.”