Biden privately said Trump should be prosecuted for January 6 riot and is frustrated with AG Garland for not taking 'decisive action': report
- Biden has privately said Trump should be prosecuted over the Capitol riot, per The New York Times.
- He reportedly called Trump a "threat to democracy," according to two individuals with knowledge of his comments.
In addition, the president described Trump as a "threat to democracy," according to two individuals with knowledge of the conversation who spoke with the newspaper.
The Times said that their report was based on interviews with more than a dozen people, "including officials in the Biden administration and people with knowledge of the president's thinking." All requested anonymity to speak freely, the paper said.
Biden has reportedly grown frustrated with US Attorney General
However, per the report, Biden has never articulated his frustrations about the January 6 cases directly to Garland.
Democratic Rep. Elaine Luria of Virginia, who serves on the House panel investigating the January 6 riot, last week said that the Department of Justice "must move swiftly" and told the attorney general to "do your job so that we can do ours."
Garland on Friday told reporters that the prosecutors handling the case only felt an urgency "to do the right thing," which has made them "follow the facts and the law wherever they may lead."
White House spokesperson Andrew Bates said in a statement to The Times that Biden felt as though Garland had "decisively restored" a high level of independence back to the Justice Department, an apparent reference to the Trump administration's prior influence on the agency.
"President Biden is immensely proud of the attorney general's service in this administration and has no role in investigative priorities or decisions," he said.
A spokesperson from the Justice Department declined to comment to The Times regarding the matter.
The January 6 investigation represents a huge part of both Biden and Garland's commitment to ensuring that the American public has faith in the Justice Department.
On the one-year anniversary of the January 6 riot, Biden strongly rebuked Trump for his conduct on that day and pledged that he would "defend this nation" against those who would attempt to hold the seat of the federal government under siege.
"Those who stormed this Capitol and those who instigated and incited and those who called on them to do so," he added, "held a dagger at the throat of America, at American democracy."
"Is that what you thought when you looked at the mob ransacking the Capitol, destroying property, literally defecating in the hallways, rifling through desks of senators and representatives, hunting down members of Congress? Patriots? Not in my view," he said in a speech at the National Statuary Hall at the time.
Justice Department officials have pointed out that their investigation has resulted in more than 775 arrests, with over 280 individuals having been charged with obstructing the certification of the presidential election results, per the report.
Also, The Justice Department has recently expanded its investigation into the insurrection to include an analysis of the organization of Trump's "Stop the Steal" rally that preceded the Capitol riot. However, the department has not indicated a timeline or said if prosecutors were mulling over a case against Trump.
Mary Trump, the niece of the former president, has previously said that Garland is an "idiot" for not prosecuting her uncle over the riot.
The January 6 committee last month said in a court filing that they believed Trump had broken several laws in seeking to overturn the 2020 election results. However, the filing was not an indictment and did not charge the former president with any crimes.
Trump has previously attempted to block investigations into the Capitol riot by claiming that he and his allies are protected by executive privilege, but the Biden White House has rejected those arguments.
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