Rep. Greg Steube, R-Fla., told Newsmax Friday that Thursday's testimony of Attorney General Merrick Garland in front of the House Judiciary Committee shows ''the politicization'' of the Department of Justice under President Joe Biden.
Steube asked Garland to explain the difference between what happened at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 and a protest Oct. 14 at the Department of the Interior building in Washington, D.C., where environmentalists forced their way into the building, injuring officers, and protesters.
''It's clear that you feel very strongly about using the full force of your position to prosecute those involved in the Jan. 6 protests, (while) just last week, on Oct. 14, a group of extremists, environmental and indigenous protesters forced their way into the Department of Interior,'' Steube said during the hearing Thursday. ''Do you believe that these environmental extremists who forced their way into the Department of Interior are also domestic terrorists?''
Garland said he was not aware of the Oct. 14 incident.
''I'm not going to be able to reference that specific incident since it's the first I know about it, but I will say that the DOJ does not care ... '' Garland responded.
Steube said on ''Greg Kelly Reports'' Friday that either Garland was ''lying'' to the committee, or his deputies at the DOJ had not told him about it.
''Left wing extremists forced their way into a federal building, which also doesn't surprise me, and [this] shows you the level of politicization that has happened at the Department of Justice,'' Steube said during the show. ''You know just as well as I do if those people had [former President Donald] Trump 'MAGA' hats on, and were forcing their way in the Department of the Interior, it would be all over the mainstream media, you would have known everything about it.''
Several hundred Trump supporters forced their way into the Capitol building on Jan. 6 to try and disrupt a joint session of Congress officially tabulating the Electoral College vote from the 2020 presidential election.
Five people were died including Trump supporter Ashli Babbitt, who was shot to death by a Capitol Police officer, and Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick, who died later after suffering two strokes during the riot.
The remaining three died of other causes, according to the Washington, D.C. Medical Examiner's Office.
In prior congressional testimony, Garland said the Jan. 6 incident ''was the biggest threat to democracy'' that he had ever witnessed while being in law enforcement or on the bench as a judge.
''For the record, 55 people were arrested at the Department of the Interior for that protest and then getting into the building,'' Steube said. ''Officers were injured. Officers had to go to the hospital. Security personnel were injured, and there were other people [there] who they didn't get to arrest. They got away, and [Garland] has no idea that this even happened.''
Steube compared that event to the more than 600 people arrested and charged following the Capitol riot after a F.B.I. dragnet, with some arrested by SWAT teams at their homes.
''I have a feeling they're not going to treat [the environmentalists from Oct. 14] like domestic terrorists, like the Jan. 6 crowd,'' he said.
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