By Jackson Elliott
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla.—George said he thinks former president Donald Trump got what he deserved with the Mar-a-Lago raid.
But he also said the raid was politically motivated and that he doesn’t trust the FBI.
“Even though I don’t like him, I think it’s all part of the same game from the other side, just to take away the election from him,” said George who preferred not to have his surname published.
George said that while he supports the Democrats, the Biden administration has done so badly that it’s almost guaranteed to lose the next election.
Among Florida locals interviewed near Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home on Thursday, most said the FBI raid has destroyed their trust in the federal government.
Even the release of new documents explaining the FBI raid would likely not change their feelings.
“I feel like whatever we get is whatever they want us to see. So they may give you a good reason. They may not. But I feel like, in the end, it’s just whatever they wanted,” George said.
He added that he believes the FBI has always been political. He said he sees the Trump raid and former FBI director James Comey’s press conference on Hillary Clinton as two sides of the same coin.
West Palm Beach resident John Leary said that no matter what new court documents get released on the Mar-a-Lago raid, the FBI can’t repair his shattered trust. Leary supports Trump.
“The damage has been done,” he said. “This is a pattern to see that it has been engaged in for a long time. For the four years of the Trump administration, senior people at the FBI engaged in exactly this type of behavior.”
He said he highly doubts that FBI leaders are “on the level.”
“The FBI has become a bureau of bullies and intimidators. They’re clearly political, at least the upper levels,” he said. “I mean, who would think this is a good idea?”
George Ray, another resident, said he believed the Mar-a-Lago raid was an attempt by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to prevent Trump from seeking the presidency.
“To me, it is a very, very sad moment in American history,” Ray said.
He also said he didn’t trust the FBI.
“I no longer can trust them to act non-politically, because I think that they are an arm of the Democratic Party,” Ray said.
He said he believed that Trump declassified all documents he took from the White House before he left the White House.
A redacted document explaining the motivations for granting the Mar-a-Lago warrant would likely be useless, he added.
“It’s easy when you are redacting a legal document to remove any of the truth and the very heart of why you pursued the warrant to begin with,” he said.
Only one person interviewed in West Palm Beach said she still believed the FBI investigation would work. Beverly Lynn Ayala said she thought the investigation would eventually find the truth because the justice system consistently works.
“I just believe in our court system,” she said. “Completely.”