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Dem Congresswoman Claims GOP, White House Sowing Distrust In Institutions


After a Republican Congressman called for a "purge" of the FBI and the Justice Department, Democratic Congresswoman Karen Bass, D-Calif., has accused the GOP and the White House of seeking to sow distrust in the nation's institutions.

Bass suggested in an interview on CNN's "Erin Burnett OutFront" on Wednesday that Congressman Francis Rooney, R-Fla., needs a "history lesson" after his "purge" comments.

"The type of purges he's talking about harkens back to the Cold War, when there was a purge by McCarthy to find communists that were hidden in the federal government," Bass said.

"It sows distrust in our institutions, and I think it is irresponsible," she added. "Maybe he needs a history lesson. Maybe that's what would be helpful in this time period."

The comments from Bass come after Rooney argued in an interview with MSNBC earlier this week that the leaders of the FBI and the Justice Department should oust officials that are politically compromised.

"I would like to see the directors of these agencies purge it and say 'Look, we have a lot of great agents, a lot of great lawyers here,'" Rooney said.

He added, "Those are the people that I want the American people to see and know the good work being done, not these people that are kind of the deep state."

Rooney specifically mentioned FBI agent Peter Strzok, who was removed from special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation after it was revealed he had sent disparaging text messages about President Donald Trump.

In the interview with CNN, Bass accused Rooney and other Republican lawmakers of working with the White House to lay the foundation for mistrust in the outcome of Mueller's investigation.

"When we had the head of the FBI, when we had the assistant attorney general come before our committee, the entire Republican side of the committee was asking questions along the same lines," Bass said. "Their talking points were the same."

She added, "They're clearly doing this in conjunction and collaboration with the White House, and they are in the White House -- as well as in the House -- laying the foundation when indictments come to say they are not valid because the investigation was invalid."

Trump has repeatedly called the investigation of collusion between his presidential campaign and the Russian government a politically motivated "witch hunt."

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