Court Battles

Gaetz says he’ll offer bill to defund Jack Smith investigations of Trump

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) announced on his podcast Tuesday he is introducing legislation to defund investigations into former President Trump led by special counsel Jack Smith.

Gaetz made the announcement hours after Trump said he’d been notified he is a target of the Justice Department’s investigation into the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol attack and efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election results. Smith is leading the investigation.

“They are attacking our democracy and engaging in election interference right now,” said Gaetz, who vowed to “defund the Jack Smith investigation.”

He also alleged the investigation lacks transparency, saying the Justice Department has been nonresponsive to his request for information about who is on Smith’s team.

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.)

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) discusses the National Defense Authorization Act as a member of the House Freedom Caucus at the Capitol on Friday, July 14, 2023. (Tierney L. Cross)

Gaetz sits on the House Judiciary Committee. Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), the committee’s chairman, has threatened to cut funding for the Justice Department and FBI, alleging those agencies have been “weaponized” for political purposes.

After Trump was indicted in the investigation into documents found at his Mar-a-Lago home in Florida — another investigation Smith is leading — Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) called for defunding Smith’s office.

Gaetz said he knows President Biden would not sign his proposal into law and that Senate Majority Leader “Chuck Schumer [D-N.Y.] would never bring such a thing up.”

“But you deserve to know where your members of Congress are countedWill they cosponsor my legislation? I certainly hope they will,” he said.

More from The Hill

If Trump is indicted in the Jan. 6 investigation, it would be his third indictment this year and his second on federal charges. Trump has pleaded not guilty in the other indictments. One stemmed from charges in Manhattan related to an alleged hush money scheme, and the other was in the Smith-led case related to Trump’s holding of classified documents at Mar-a-Lago.

Trump said in a statement Tuesday the various investigations are a “witch hunt” and “all about election interference” in all caps.

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A spokesperson for Smith’s office declined to comment.

This story was updated at 11:10 a.m.

Tags Charles Schumer DOJ Donald Trump Jack Smith Jack Smith Jim Jordan Matt Gaetz Matt Gaetz

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