Unprecedented in the history of the United States. FBI agents raid the residence of a former president. They wanted to retrieve documents – including some “top secret” – taken by Trump from the White House to his residence in Mar-a-Lago, Florida.
This is a major escalation in the various investigations of Donald Trump. A historic moment in the presidency and American democracy is playing out before our eyes.
For the FBI to unexpectedly decide to act, it is because something serious is happening. He only gets search warrants when he has to intervene because he fears evidence (documents or electronic devices) will be destroyed.
Trump's future is in game
The Justice Department and the FBI knew very well that this was going to have explosive political repercussions. And now, if Trump is not sued, it will escalate the situation further by suggesting that the search was unjustified.
If his party is in the majority in the fall, the leader of the GOP in the House, Kevin McCarthy, plans to create a committee to investigate the search specifically targeting Attorney General Garland.
If convicted of unlawfully seizing government documents, Trump could be barred from holding any federal office. So, no return to the White House in 2024. He would also be liable to a sentence of up to three years in prison.
90 days before the midterm elections, Trump and the Republicans use the search to mobilize their troops. Investigations against Trump only increase his appeal to supporters who believe he is being persecuted.
Trump is currently the subject of multiple criminal investigations, including those related to his incitement to the January 6 insurrection on Capitol Hill: he wanted to stop the ceremony confirming the victory of Joe Biden.
The contempt that Donald Trump's poster for the rules is unprecedented in US history. His assaults on state institutions and the reactions they provoke further shake Americans' already shaky faith in them.
Because of Trump, the far right, which straddles the Republican Party, succeeded in inserting itself into political “normalcy” in the United States.
The call to arms
If ever Trump is found guilty of any of the crimes he is accused of, he will not hesitate to launch an appeal to his supporters to prevent his incarceration. The man with the long red tie will be able to count on defending him against tens of thousands of armed crackpots.
A writer for the far-right site Breitbart News writes about the FBI raid: “ There is suddenly a very real risk of violent political instability in this country for the first time in over 150 years.”
A columnist for the magazine Foreign Policy already felt in 2017 about the United States: “It's like in 1859, everyone is mad about something and everyone has a gun”.
How to better define the United States current?