Former President Donald Trump says that Thursday’s chaotic Republican-led House hearing on the supposed politicization of the FBI was “very sad.”
The hearing, spearheaded by Republican Congressman Jim Jordan, featured lawmakers bickering over the legitimacy of supposed FBI “whistleblowers” who were testifying about the “weaponization” of the federal government. Witnesses that included two suspended FBI agents and one former agent claimed that the agency was biased against conservatives.
Trump, who is the subject of dual federal criminal investigations as he seeks to regain the presidency in 2024, lamented the hearing in a Truth Social post hours later, while declaring himself “a victim.” He also suggested that Congress should “straighten it out” through the power of “its purse strings,” possibly echoing Jordan’s recent call to defund the FBI.
“Very sad watching what took place today in Congress regarding Whistleblowers and the FBI,” Trump wrote. “There has never been a time like this in our Country, the complete weaponization of Justice. I am a victim also, but the real victim is the United States of America. Congress must use its purse strings to straighten it out, before it is too late! MAGA 2024.”
Newsweek has reached out via email to the office of Trump and the FBI for comment.
The hearing on Thursday was conducted by the House Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government, which Jordan chairs. The subcommittee was created by Republicans in response to the raid of Mar-a-Lago last year. It has largely focused on alleged corruption and political bias in the FBI.
During Thursday’s hearing, House Democrats, who previously said that two of the three witnesses had been paid by ex-Trump adviser Kash Patel and promoted “a wide range of conspiracy theories,” argued that the witnesses were not legitimate whistleblowers regardless of their grievances with the FBI.
Republicans said that it was up to the witnesses themselves and “the law” to decide their status as whistleblowers. At one point, Democratic Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz said that the law had not found the witnesses to be whistleblowers, despite one of their lawyers “just asserting” that they were.
Former FBI agent Steve Friend and suspended agent Garret O’Boyle both admitted to being paid by Patel while being questioned by Democratic Congressman Daniel Goldman during the hearing.
When asked by a reporter whether the payments from Patel were appropriate prior to the hearing, Jordan responded by saying the witnesses “got a family” and were doing “whatever they can to feed their family.”
The witnesses told the subcommittee that the FBI had retaliated against them for speaking out about supposed bias and corruption in the bureau. The FBI rejected the claims, telling Newsweek that it “has not and will not retaliate against individuals who make protected whistleblower disclosures.”