As the FBI raided President Trump's Mar-A-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida, the White House was unaware that any federal law enforcement activity was afoot — or at least that's what unnamed sources were spinning to mainstream outlets Monday evening.
According to one of those infamous "source familiar" people who runs their mouth without any accountability, senior White House officials found out about the FBI's raid on Trump's "Southern White House" like the rest of us and had no prior notice. The New York Times described the White House's discovery of the raid, reporting "Aides to President Biden said they were stunned by the development and learned of it from Twitter." Stunned. How convenient.
Senior White House officials found out about the FBI’s Mar a Lago raid on Twitter, had no notice, per source familiar— Jonathan Martin (@jmartNYT) August 8, 2022
Suffice it to say, that claim or explanation isn't going to fly with a lot of Americans. The principal law enforcement agency of the federal government, the definition of executive power, decided to raid the home of the former president, and the White House didn't know anything about it until people started tweeting?
That sounds like either the White House is lying or the FBI was shielding the White House from prior knowledge of the raid/scavenger hunt in Palm Beach — neither of which is a terribly good image for the FBI and Biden administration to be putting forward.
What's more, if the White House really didn't know anything about the plans to raid Mar-A-Lago, who is overseeing the FBI and providing accountability for any of its other actions?
Whether the Democrats and mainstream media cheering this on are excited by the idea that 1) the FBI is going rogue wherever it wants and returning to some of its J. Edgar Hoover roots or 2) thrilled that a Democrat administration is using federal law enforcement to target political adversaries is anyone's guess. Vespa had a great writeup of their giddiness here.
In the days ahead, there are sure to be calls for the White House, DOJ, and FBI to clarify how the raid came to be, who knew about it, and what its aim was. Certainly Karine Jean-Pierre isn’t looking forward to her next White House press briefing.