Donald Trump was quick to attack Attorney General Merrick Garland’s appointment of a special prosecutor to oversee criminal investigations of the former president.
“I have been going through this for six years — for six years I have been going through this, and I am not going to go through it anymore,” Trump told Fox News Digital in an interview Friday. “And I hope the Republicans have the courage to fight this.”
Trump, who earlier this week announced his third presidential run, is facing a number of investigations which will now fall under the special prosecutor’s purview, including allegedly storing classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago estate and allegedly inciting the Jan. 6 riots. On Friday, the former president maintained his innocence, calling the appointment “unfair,” “political,” “not even believable,” and “the worst politicization of justice in our country.”
“I have been proven innocent for six years on everything — from fake impeachments to Mueller, who found no collusion, and now I have to do it more? It is not acceptable. It is so unfair. It is so political,” Trump told Fox, adding “I am not going to partake in it.”
At a news conference later Friday in front of patrons and supporters at his Mar-a-Lago residence, Trump referred to the classified document investigation as a “hoax” conducted for “political reasons.” He further called the various criminal probes against him “corrupt” and the 2020 elections “rigged” in a diatribe more usually delivered from a campaign rally stage.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the White House did not receive any advance notice of the appointment.
“This is — the Department of Justice makes their own decision when it relates to criminal investigation. We were not involved,” Jean-Pierre said.
When asked specifically about Trump’s comments to Fox, Jean-Pierre reaffirmed the White House’s stance.
“We do not politicize the Department of Justice. That is something that the president said during the campaign. That is something that the president said during his early days of being in the White House, and that continues to be true. We were not involved in this particular issue,” Jean-Pierre said.