Not Watergate - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 2010898

Not Watergate

In the wake of the FBI search of Mar-a-Lago, some Republicans threatened to retaliate against Attorney General Merrick Garland if they take back control of the House and the Senate. They doubled down on claims of political persecution against Donald Trump. They encouraged domestic terrorism against FBI agents, the Department of Justice and the judge who lawfully authorized the search.

This knee-jerk reaction by Republicans should be shocking to all patriotic Americans.

As an attorney, I know it is not easy to obtain a search warrant, especially in such a high-profile case. FBI agents had to get authorization from Garland, FBI Director Christopher Wray (a Republican, appointed by Trump), and a federal judge, who found there was probable cause that evidence of a crime would be found at the site.

It is reprehensible and dangerous for elected officials to falsely accuse and attempt to intimidate other public officials for carrying out their lawful duties. Such inflammatory rhetoric can only lead to violence and anarchy. The Republicans who continue to spread such disinformation dishonor all Americans who gave their lives fighting to defend democracy and preserve our freedoms.

This search was not another Watergate, as Republicans claim. The objective of the Watergate burglary was to place illegal wiretaps to uncover political dirt to help Nixon get reelected. By contrast, the objective of the Mar-a-Lago search was to recover boxes of classified documents, including nuclear records, that Trump illegally removed from the White House when he left office.

Trump had previously been subpoenaed to return this material to the government, but, as usual, Trump ignored the subpoena. This left the government no choice but to go in and take the documents back. There could be grave national security repercussions if these highly sensitive documents got into the wrong hands.

Republican outrage is manufactured. But they have chosen, through their cowardly and hypocritical rhetoric, to put retention of personal power over the good of our nation.

There is only one political party today that cares about truth and the rule of law. If we don’t elect more Democrats to Congress, we run the risk of losing our democracy, as we slide further toward authoritarianism.

Democrat Bridget Fleming, candidate for Congress in the 1st District, understands the stakes. Bridget is an attorney who spent almost 10 years prosecuting crimes as an assistant district attorney in Manhattan. She knows the difference between political theater and legal accountability.

She has served as Suffolk County legislator since 2016 and knows how to govern. If elected, Bridget will fight corruption and to preserve our individual liberties. She will defend our democracy and fight for reproductive freedom, sensible gun regulation, job security, universal health care and environmental protection.

Andrea Klausner, Esq.


Southampton Democratic Committee