Yesterday, Ohio Senator JD Vance gave a speech explaining that he is holding up the confirmation of a US Attorney candidate for his own state because Donald Trump is being prosecuted for stealing classified documents but — Vance claimed in an earlier version of this rant — “the President and his family [go] completely untouched.”
Meanwhile, yesterday’s version of Vance’s harangue claimed that “it is Joe Biden’s border policies that have invited this fentanyl into our country at record levels.”
It’s an interesting take, given that Republicans keep dragging law enforcement away from fighting the fentanyl crisis so they can explain that the conspiracy theories right wingers believe about the investigation into Hunter Biden are false.
In a July hearing where both Jim Jordan and now-Speaker Mike Johnson complained — relying on Terry Doughty’s badly misinformed opinion — that (they claimed) the FBI had prevented millions of people from sniffing Hunter Biden’s dick pics before the 2020 election, Chris Wray pointed to the impact two drug busts had had in Marion, Ohio.
Just last month, for instance, the FBI charged 31 members of two drug trafficking organizations responsible for distributing dangerous drugs like fentanyl, cocaine, and methamphetamine throughout the area around Marion, Ohio. In that one investigation, run out of the FBI’s 2-man office in Mansfield, we worked with partners in multiple local police departments and sheriff’s offices to take kilos of fentanyl off Marion’s streets, enough lethal doses, I should add, to kill the entire population of Columbus, Cleveland, and Cincinnati, combined.
As I noted at the time, this was good staff work. Marion, Mansfield, and Lorrain are all in Jim Jordan’s district (and so all obviously constituents of Vance, as well).
Jim Jordan took time out of Chris Wray’s day so he could complain about Hunter Biden’s dick pics, while ignoring the drug problems facing his own constituents.
It’s not just Wray.
In testimony last week before Jordan’s committee, the US Attorney for Los Angeles, Martin Estrada, struggled to explain to Jordan’s staffers why his own top AUSAs didn’t think it smart to reallocate prosecutors to partner on the Hunter Biden investigation at a time his office was 40 prosecutors short of the number they’re supposed to have. As Estrada explained, instead, CDCA granted Special AUSA status to some prosecutors from Delaware and had done so even as Gary Shapley wailed that nothing was going on in LA.
Jordan’s top aide Steve Castor was incredulous that Estrada wouldn’t know specific details about what the Delaware prosecutors granted Special Assistant status to pursue a case against Hunter Biden in LA were doing.
I mean, this is a potential prosecution of the President’s son. If the lawyers from the District of Delaware were out in your district discussing the case, don’t you think you’d know about it?
When Estrada tried to get Castor to understand how different the priorities looked when you were running the country’s biggest US Attorney’s office, fentanyl was the first thing he raised.
I think a little context would be helpful. So, as I said, we have the largest district in the country. We have a Fentanyl epidemic which is one of the worst in the country’s. We’ve done more death-resulting cases than any other district in the country. We’re on pace to do more this year than we ever had before.
There are a lot of high-profile cases, so I don’t meet with attorneys on every single high-profile case.
We have a fentanyl epidemic. That includes not just death-resulting cases, it includes going after cartels which are distributing these pills, not just in powder form but in pill form. We routinely seize over a million pills at a time from vehicles, and we need to prosecute those cases. Each pill could be a death. And routinely now we’re finding cartels transporting fentanyl in liquid form, which is a new thing that they’re doing. So we have to do those cases.
Republicans claim to care about the fentanyl crisis. But in reality, they keep proving that they care more about Hunter Biden’s dick pics than they do about their troubled constituents in Marion, OH.