Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has announced plans to introduce a resolution condemning former President Donald Trump's call to defund the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Department of Justice (DOJ), labeling it a "baseless, self-serving broadside against the men and women who keep our nation safe." The resolution is set for introduction when the Senate reconvenes from recess next week.
In response to Trump's demand on his social media platform Truth Social, Schumer said he would offer a Senate resolution recognizing the dedication of those serving in law enforcement agencies, condemning calls to defund Justice and the FBI, and rejecting partisan attempts aimed at degrading public trust in these institutions. According to Schumer, this measure is intended as both an acknowledgement of federal law enforcement officers' committed service and as pushback against the former President's call for defunding their organizations.
The impending vote will put Republicans' loyalty towards Trump under scrutiny while providing Democrats with an opportunity to support legislation that appreciates federal law enforcement professionals. Former President Trump had urged Congress to use its "power of the purse" against agencies involved in investigating him—an idea highly unlikely to gain traction in either chamber or receive approval from President Biden if it were ever brought before him.
As part of his plan, Senator Schumer may request unanimous consent for passing this resolution; however, any single Republican senator sympathetic towards Trump could block its passage. This move represents a reversal from typical 118th Congress proceedings wherein majority leaders utilize their authority primarily on behalf of their own party members.
This development comes amidst growing tensions between GOP House representatives and federal law enforcement over alleged abuses by these agencies. A new Judiciary subcommittee called "weaponization of the federal government" was formed by House Republicans specifically for investigating such claims.
Political strategists warn that aligning with calls like Trump's to defund the FBI and DOJ could prove dangerous for Republicans who typically campaign on being "tough on crime." In contrast, Senate Majority Leader Schumer has called upon his colleagues to stand against such "MAGA-extremist" requests.
The resolution will be introduced following Congress' return from a two-week recess beginning April 17. It is expected to generate considerable debate as both parties weigh the implications of supporting or opposing this measure.