A Florida prosecutor said responses from various allies of former President Trump to reports that the Department of Justice (DOJ) had issued dozens of subpoenas in its Jan. 6 probe show Attorney General Merrick Garland’s prosecutorial strategy has given Trump allies “a false sense of security.”
“The fact that [Stephen] Bannon and other MAGA leaders seem shocked that this happened shows to me that Merrick Garland has lulled many in Trump World into a false sense of security,” Dave Aronberg, the state attorney for Palm Beach County, Fla., said on CNN’s “The Situation Room” on Monday.
“This is the kind of slow build that Attorney General Garland has been known for in his prosecutorial career. It’s like that boiling frog that doesn’t recognize the temperature has been turned up until it’s too late,” he added.
The Florida prosecutor’s comments come amid reports that the Justice Department issued around 40 subpoenas in the past week as part of its investigation into efforts by Trump and his supporters to overturn the 2020 presidential election results.
Aronberg noted that the subpoenas were issued just before the start of the 60-day preelection “quiet period,” when the department seeks to avoid taking action that could be seen as influencing an election.
Investigators have reportedly been looking into a plan to submit alternative electors to former Vice President Mike Pence on Jan. 6, 2021, when Congress was meeting to formally certify President Biden’s electoral win.
Aronberg floated potential DOJ action against prominent pro-Trump figures over the “fake electors” scheme.
“Those individuals, including Trump, who knew that the lists of alternate electors were not legitimate and knew that they were being submitted to government bodies could be charged with conspiracy to defraud the United States — also obstruction of an official proceeding,” Aronberg said.
The Florida prosecutor also suggested the department could look at financial exchanges related to Trump’s Save America PAC. New reports indicate the DOJ’s special grand jury is looking into the political action committee’s formation and fundraising.
“Financial schemes are easier to prove than others because they’re focused on paper trails. People lie, but documents do not,” he said.