Senate Republicans vow to block DOJ funding, Biden nominees: ‘We no longer cooperate’

The senators suggested the White House was responsible for former President Trump's conviction.

U.S. Senator Mike Lee speaking with attendees at the 2022 Student Action Summit at the Tampa Convention Center in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

Eight Republican senators have pledged to oppose non-security funding increases that would allow the U.S. Department of Justice and other agencies to engage in what they call “partisan lawfare” following the May 30 guilty verdicts against former President Donald Trump.

The Republicans, led by Senate Steering Committee Chairman Mike Lee (R-Utah), also said they won’t vote to confirm President Joe Biden’s appointees or allow any Democrat-backed bill not directly related to public safety to advance through the upper chamber via “expedited consideration.”

“The White House has made a mockery of the rule of law and fundamentally altered our politics in un-American ways,” the senators said in a joint statement on May 31, after a New York jury found President Trump guilty of 34 charges of falsifying business records.

The guilty verdict, which concluded a roughly seven-week trial stemming from a payment made to an adult film actress before the 2016 election, makes President Trump the first U.S. president to be convicted of a crime. The former president pleaded not guilty to the accusations and dismissed the proceeding as a “rigged” scheme to undermine his reelection campaign.

Speaking at a news conference on May 31 in the lobby of Trump Tower in downtown Manhattan, President Trump accused the Biden administration of orchestrating the criminal case against him.

“They are in total conjunction with the White House and the DOJ, just so you understand,” he said at the news conference. “This is all done by Biden and his people.”

The senators’ public letter echoed the accusation.

“As a Senate Republican conference, we are unwilling to aid and abet this White House in its project to tear this country apart,” they wrote.

Specifically, the senators said they won’t allow “any increase to non-security related funding” for the Biden administration or any appropriations bill for the DOJ; won’t vote to confirm the Biden administration’s political and judicial appointees; and won’t fast-track Democrat legislative proposals that are “not directly relevant to the safety of the American people.”

The pledge was joined by Sens. J.D. Vance (R-Ohio), Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), Eric Schmitt (R-Mo.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.). Both Mr. Vance and Mr. Rubio are thought to be on President Trump’s list of potential vice presidential nominees.

“Strongly worded statements are not enough,” Mr. Lee wrote in a post on social media platform X, along with a copy of the letter. “We are no longer cooperating with any Democrat legislative priorities or nominations, and we invite all concerned Senators to join our stand.”

President Biden has repeatedly said that he has nothing to do with President Trump’s legal troubles at the state level. He also argued that his convicted opponent “was given every opportunity to defend himself.”

“It was a state case, not a federal case. It was heard by a jury of 12 citizens — 12 Americans, 12 people like you, like millions of Americans who’ve served on juries,” the president said at the White House before delivering remarks on the Middle East war. “This jury was chosen the same way every jury in America is chosen. It was a process that Donald Trump’s attorney was part of.”

“Now he’ll be given the opportunity, as he should, to appeal that decision just like everyone else has that opportunity,” he added.

President Trump must first be sentenced before he can appeal the conviction, a process that could take months or even years to move through the New York State court system.

The sentencing is scheduled for July 11, four days before the start of the Republican National Convention, where he is expected to be nominated to have a rematch with President Biden in the November election.

This article was originally published at The Epoch Times


Bill Pan | The Epoch Times

Bill Pan is a reporter for The Epoch Times.