Former Attorney General Eric Holder said Wednesday that the U.S. is undergoing a “stress test the likes of which we’ve not seen since Watergate,” specifically citing American institutions and the “founding documents” as being under stress.
He also warned that Republican attacks on the FBI’s credibility could have “long-term consequences,” according to Business Insider.
“I think for something that is for short-term partisan gain, people are not looking at the long-term consequences of that,” Holder said, speaking to reporters. “When you try to delegitimize a probe and try to delegitimize the FBI and you try to delegitimize the Justice Department, that has long-term collateral consequences.”
The Hill added:
Some Republicans, including President Trump, have taken to criticizing the FBI’s handling of its probe into Russian interference in the 2016 campaign. The current federal investigation is led by special counsel Robert Mueller, who is also looking at allegations of Trump campaign collusion. Some Republicans claim Mueller’s investigation is biased, following the revelation that two agents on his team allegedly sent anti-Trump text messages last year.
Holder said there are some parallels between the current situation and the Watergate scandal that resulted in the resignation of former President Nixon.
“At that point, people put partisan politics aside and decided that country was more important than party,” Holder said. “I hope we’ll see the same thing here.”
Holder said he was disappointed in his successor, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, for not defending the law enforcement agency from partisan attacks.
“And I’m disturbed by that — uniquely disturbed by the fact that I’ve seen nothing from this attorney general to defend the people of the Justice Department who are patriots and who do their jobs without any regard to partisan politics,” Holder said. “They need to be defended.”