Former President of the United States Donald Trump points to the crowd at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in Washington, D.C., on July 26. File Photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI | License Photo
Sept. 3 (UPI) -- Former President Donald Trump on Saturday night gave his first rally since Mar-a-Lago, his residence in Florida, was raided by FBI agents last month searching for classified documents he took from the White House at the end of his presidency.
Trump, while stumping for Pennsylvania gubernatorial candidate Doug Monstriano, accused Democrats of "weaponizing the Justice Department and the FBI" and "raiding and breaking into the homes of their political opponents."
The former president also accused Democrats of "imprisoning political protesters," an apparent reference to those who participated in the insurrection at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, and once again falsely accused Democrats of "rigging elections."
"There could be no more vivid example of the very real threats on American freedom than just a few weeks ago, you saw it, when we witnessed one of the most shocking abuses of power by any administration in American history," Trump said from the podium in Wilkes-Barre.
On Friday, the Justice Department released a more detailed list of the items taken from Trump's home including dozens of documents marked secret and top secret, as well as empty folders marked with secret classification marking raising concerns about whether all documents had been retrieved.
The FBI also took more than 10,000 other documents that were not classified, which included newspaper and magazine clippings.
"The shameful raid and break-in of my home, Mar-a-Lago, was a travesty of justice that made a mockery of America's laws, traditions and principles before the entire world. The entire world was watching and they're shocked," Trump said.
"The Biden administration invaded the home of their chief political opponent who is absolutely destroying him and everyone else in the poll."
Trump claimed that the "highly political magistrate" who signed the warrant for the search was "handpicked late in the evening just days before the break in" and said that the raid trampled on his rights and civil liberties "as if we're like a third world nation."
The former president said that the FBI searched through his closet of his wife, Melania, as well as his son Barron Trump's bedroom.
"The FBI and Justice Department have become vicious monsters controlled by radical left scoundrels, lawyers and the media, who tell them what to do and when to do it," Trump said.
"They're trying to silence me and more importantly they are trying to silence you but we will not be silenced."
Trump tried to describe the raid a persecution of American citizens, not just him, using a propaganda technique where the speaker identifies the listeners as victims.
"It was not just my home that was raided last month," Trump said. "It was the hopes and dreams of every citizen who I've been fighting for since the moment I came down the golden escalator in 2015."
He also tried to point the finger at former First Lady Hillary Clinton, who as Secretary of State, set up a private server on which official business was conducted, which some have claimed violated federal record-keeping laws, though Clinton was never prosecuted.
"They talk about documents not being properly stored, then they go and take documents, dump them on the floor, stage a photo shoot and pretend that I had done it, like I had put them all over the floor," Trump said.
He added: "This egregious abuse of the law is going to provide a backlash, the likes that nobody has ever seen before."
Trump on Friday rebuked Bill Barr on Friday, after his former attorney general defended the FBI search for classified documents at Mar-a-Lago.
Writing on his Truth Social platform, Trump claimed Barr was "fired" long before the former president left the White House after Barr went on Fox News to defend the FBI's search of Trump's residence in Florida last month.
Barr, the attorney general under Donald Trump, on Friday defended the FBI search of the former president's Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida last month.
"People say that this is unprecedented, but it's also unprecedented for a president to take all this classified information and put it in a country club," Barr said. "How long is the government going to try and get that back?" Barr added.
"The facts are starting to show that they were being jerked around."