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Questions and Answers

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By tommietheturtle from Palm Beach, United States – marlago estage gate palm beach florida, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=54921128

The folks at Lawfare have an exhaustive discussion of the Raid on Mar-a-Lago that I found helpful…

Is this a big deal? 

Yes. 

A warrant requires probable cause that criminal activity has taken place or is taking place. Any time the government is willing to go before a federal court and persuade a judge that criminal activity justifies a search of the former president’s residence, it’s a very big deal. It’s such a big deal, in fact, that it has never happened before. 

For my own part I’d simply like to temper the enthusiasm that we’re seeing online with an acknowledgement that, as the above implies, this is a Big Deal. Authorizing the request for the search warrant in the face of the likely response from the GOP and its supporters cannot have been an easy decision, and to my mind strongly suggests that inquiry is focused on something substantial. But it is, of course, hard to say, and it’s also hard to say how things are going to turn out.

Of the substance I can say little or nothing except to note that the idea that the FBI is a liberal institution (certainly in the American sense of the term and probably in the political theory sense of the term) is flatly absurd. Anyone who tells you otherwise either knows no one who was ever part of the organization or is a liar.

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