On the day millions of Americans left unemployed by the coronavirus pandemic prepare to lose benefits, President Donald Trump publicly aired his grievances with federal law enforcement agencies and the Supreme Court.
In a tweetstorm beginning early Saturday morning, Trump railed against the Department of Justice and U.S. attorney John Durham for failing to produce a report that exposed wrongdoing in the FBI's Russia probe.
“Where the hell is the Durham Report? They spied on my campaign, colluded with Russia (and others), and got caught,” Trump tweeted without providing any evidence to back his claims.
The president then took aim at the FBI and DOJ for not pursuing baseless claims of voter fraud in the 2020 election, saying the agencies “should be ashamed” for the lack of action against what he deemed “the biggest SCAM” in U.S. history.
Attorney General Bill Barr, who appointed Durham as a special counsel to investigate the origins of the FBI’s Russia investigation, left the Justice Dept. on Wednesday after falling out of favor with Trump for not supporting the president’s claims of widespread voter fraud or releasing Durham’s report before the November election.
Trump also took aim at the Supreme Court, calling it "totally incompetent and weak" and again questioning why it wouldn't hear a suit filed by Texas claiming election fraud, effectively ending legal challenges to the electoral process.
“See everyone in D.C. on January 6th,” Trump added, alluding to the date when some of his most ardent supporters in the House prepare to mount a long-shot challenge to overturn President-elect Joe Biden’s win while Congress counts the Electoral College votes. In a previous tweet, he accused Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Republicans of having "NO FIGHT!"
Later Saturday, Trump continued to urge Republican senators to challenge the Electoral College vote counts, citing a litany of disproved claims about election fraud.
Meanwhile, the future of a roughly $900 billion coronavirus relief package, which would provide millions of households with direct payments and enhanced federal unemployment benefits, remains in question over the president's objections.
Trump threatened to veto the relief on Tuesday if Congress didn’t increase the size of stimulus checks and gut provisions that he considered wasteful — a position he didn’t appear to back down from on Saturday.
“I simply want to get out great people $2000, rather than the measly $600 that is now in the bill. Also, stop the billions of dollars in 'pork,'” Trump said.
If Trump doesn't sign the bill — which also includes $1.4 trillion in regular government spending — a partial government shutdown would be triggered on Tuesday.