- The DOJ is investigating efforts to subvert the 2020 election and seized Rep. Scott Perry.
- Rep. Adam Schiff said the forfeiture suggests the department views the fraudulent voter scheme as criminal.
- Perry called the seizure an “abuse of power” on Fox News Sunday.
California Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff said it’s possible the Justice Department views the GOP’s fake voter scheme as criminal.
The DOJ is investigating Republican efforts to subvert the 2020 election, and Republican Scott Perry, an ally of former President Donald Trump, is apparently a key figure in the investigation.
Perry’s phone was seized Tuesday, and several Pennsylvania lawmakers have been subpoenaed by the FBI seeking information about the Pennsylvania Republican.
The California congressman called the seizure “shocking” because “probable cause” Perry committed a crime would have had to be proven.
“And the fact that it was a member of Congress on the phone, I think that would make the Justice Department even more confident, or should have been confident, that they had probable cause,” Schiff told anchor Margaret Brennan on CBS News’ Face the Nation”.
“And it also suggests that the Department thinks that this fraudulent election conspiracy was a violation of the law, which I think it certainly was. So I think that’s very significant. All of those aspects,” he added.
Trump allies have been accused of trying to create alternative voter tabs in support of Trump in seven swing states — including Pennsylvania — to overturn Biden’s presidential victory.
Perry has said he introduced Trump to Jeffrey Clark, a Justice Department official who believed the election was inaccurate. The House Select Committee on Jan. 6 revealed that Clark, whom Trump tried to install as attorney general, wrote a draft of an unsent letter to officials in six states suggesting they choose alternate electors.
Perry called the seizure of his phone an “abuse of power” on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures.”
“Anyone who doesn’t bend the knee, who doesn’t cower, who isn’t parroting the narrative, is now subject to these kinds of third-world banana republic tactics,” he added.
Perry, who was endorsed by Trump in 2018 and 2020, was the first congressional lawmaker to have his phone seized during the investigation, The Washington Post reported.
Text messages obtained by the House Select Committee on January 6 revealed that Perry texted then-White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows five days after President Biden was declared the winner of the 2020 election to “immediately seized” Dominion voting machines. Perry argued that “the British” and the CIA rigged the vote.
Former Trump aides said Perry, who has been a vocal supporter of Trump and baseless conspiracy theories, is one of six GOP lawmakers who sought preemptive pardons after the Jan. 6 riots at the Capitol.
Perry and Schiff did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.