Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco on Sunday said claims of government weaponization have contributed to an “unprecedented rise” in threats against public officials, including those in law enforcement, prosecution and election workers.
In an interview with ABC News’s “This Week,” Monaco pushed back strongly on Republican claims the Department of Justice (DOJ) is full of political operatives working to help President Biden, Monaco said.
“Those claims bear no resemblance to the Justice Department that I know. The Justice Department that I know is filled with dedicated men and women, investigators, lawyers, prosecutors, analysts, professional staff who get up every day … they get up without regard to who’s in the White House or who’s in Congress,” Monaco said.
Monaco said these claims “really bother” her and contribute to the “toxicity” of the Washington environment.
“[What] we’ve seen is an unprecedented rise in threats to public officials across the board, law enforcement agents, prosecutors, judges and election officials. And we are seeing that and responding to it,” she said.
Several members of the Republican party, notably former President Trump and several GOP congressional leaders, have repeatedly claimed without evidence that there is a “weaponization” of the federal government and that government agencies are working to promote Biden’s so-called political agenda against Trump.
Monaco reiterated the Justice Department’s standing that special counsels Jack Smith, David Weiss and Robert Hur are conducting their respective investigations in a unbiased manner. Smith, Weiss and Hur are spearheading three separate DOJ respective investigations into Trump’s alleged role on Jan. 6, 2021; Hunter Biden’s alleged tax crimes; and the potential mishandling of classified documents following Biden’s time as vice president.
Asked if the three prosecutors are operating “without regard to anything but the facts in the law,” Monaco said, “Yes. And the reason I say that here is these are matters of the utmost importance and significance.”
“It’s exceptionally important that they are handled independently, confidentially and free of any outside or inappropriate influence,” she continued. “And that’s exactly why the attorney general appointed special counsels in the first place.”
Several GOP members made similar claims of politicization within the Colorado Supreme Court, which ruled last week Trump should not appear on the ballot due to his alleged role in the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection.
The Colorado Supreme Court’s seven-member bench was entirely appointed by Democratic governors, six of whom won retention elections, and a seventh will run to do so next year. Some GOP members and even some of Trump’s GOP primary presidential rivals claim the decision is a way to prevent Trump from taking back the White House in 2024, even as three Colorado justices were opposed to taking the former president off the ballot.
Former Attorney General Bill Barr touched upon this sentiment last week, arguing Colorado’s ruling will be “counterproductive,” as Trump is a person who “feeds on grievances” and will use the decision to reinforce his narrative that the federal government is working against him.
Copyright 2023 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.