Report: FBI targets potential 2024 MAGA voters as ‘persistent, evolving, and deadly’ threat

Analysis by WorldTribune Staff, October 5, 2023

Having declared the MAGA movement an “existential threat to American democracy,” critics say that Team Biden has decided to deploy the enforcement wing of the Democrat Party, also known as the FBI, to surveil and track Trump’s supporters as the 2024 presidential campaign heats up.

Newsweek all but confirmed as much, noting that MAGA voters are being “targeted by the FBI,” according to an Oct. 4 report.

The FBI confirmed in a statement to Newsweek that one of its “top threat priorities” is “anti-government or anti-authority violent extremism.”

“The threat posed by domestic violent extremists is persistent, evolving, and deadly,” the FBI said in the statement.

The bureau added a CYA in the statement, claiming it was not targeting any particular movement: “We are committed to protecting the safety and constitutional rights of all Americans and will never open an investigation based solely on First Amendment protected activity, including a person’s political beliefs or affiliations.”

The more than 1,000 individuals who were arrested after the Jan. 6 protest would likely disagree.

FBI Director Christopher Wray continues to insist that Jan. 6, 2021 was “not an isolated event” and the threat is “not going away anytime soon.”

In a LinkedIn post commenting on the Newsweek report, political scientist and owner of Unity Training Solutions LLC Carol Swain noted: “Every American should be alarmed by this development and every #Republican presidential candidate should already be on record condemning the politicization of the #FBI. We are absolutely a Banana Republic. Where are the Republicans with cojones?”

In a joint report to Congress in June, the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) claimed that “Threats from…DVEs [domestic violent extremists] have increased in the last two years, and any further increases in threats likely will correspond to potential flashpoints, such as high-profile elections and campaigns or contentious current events.”

The report added: “Sociopolitical developments — such as narratives of fraud in the recent general election, the emboldening impact of the violent breach of the U.S. Capitol, conditions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, and conspiracy theories promoting violence — will almost certainly spur some domestic terrorists to try to engage in violence.”

Newsweek’s William F. Arkin noted: “The threats listed in that paragraph are all clearly associated with America’s right and in particular with Trump’s MAGA supporters. Right after January 6, the FBI co-authored a restricted report (‘Domestic Violent Extremists Emboldened in Aftermath of Capitol Breach, Elevated Domestic Terrorism Threat of Violence Likely Amid Political Transitions and Beyond’) in which it shifted the definition of AGAAVE (‘anti-government, anti-authority violent extremism’) from ‘furtherance of ideological agendas’ to ‘furtherance of political and/or social agendas.’ For the first time, such groups could be so labeled because of their politics.”

Arkin added: “It was a subtle change, little noticed, but a gigantic departure for the Bureau. Trump and his army of supporters were acknowledged as a distinct category of domestic violent extremists, even as the FBI was saying publicly that political views were never part of its criteria to investigate or prevent domestic terrorism.”

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