Shortly after the Mar-a-Lago raid, Trump began feeding conspiracy theories to his supporters, alleging that the FBI had planted harmful materials in his home. He also attacked the credibility of the Justice Department and described the investigation as a politically motivated attack.
The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security subsequently reported a peak in violent threats toward federal law enforcement involved in the search.
On Monday, Kinzinger told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer that Trump was 100% responsible for inciting his supporters and criticized other Republican lawmakers for echoing Trump’s “dangerous” anti-government rhetoric.
“Donald Trump and his supporters have gotten pretty creepy in the way they act and what they threaten,” Kinzinger said, referring to a message from Trump. supposedly transmitted to Attorney General Merrick Garland last week.
A person familiar with the exchange told The New York Times that the message was: “The country is on fire. What can I do to reduce the heat?
“I don’t know what it means,” Kinzinger said. “Only Donald Trump in his own head knows what that means. But it sounds to me like, you know, what you hear from the mob. ‘Hey, if you want your store to be safe, give us money. We’ll make sure you’re safe,’ when there was never really a threat in the first place.
Federal prosecutors are investigating whether Trump took highly classified materials from the White House. He is also under federal investigation for his attempted coup to stay in power.
Georgia officials are separately investigating whether Trump and his allies interfered in the 2020 state election. There are also ongoing civil and criminal investigations into his New York businesses.
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.